Thursday, March 22, 2007

Jeremiah 22:13-23; Psalm 69; Romans 8:12-27; John 6:41-51

I have been reflecting on the impact of the many events that I faced last year. God’s infinite grace has blessed me with the anticipation for joy and hope this year. The Lenten season teaches us the same principles, the joy and hope of the risen Lord!

We see in Psalm 69 a plea for help. In verses 14 through 18 the writer asks God to rescue him from deep waters, to save him from the floodwaters. Many of us have had first-hand experience with the pain of the writer and the prayer to be saved in verse 18. The trials and tribulations represented by the deep water befall us all, maybe not very often and maybe not always serious, but they occur. They may be small like arguing with your children, or they may be huge like losing a loved one, disease or cancer, or the breaking up of a marriage. It is how we choose to cope with our problems that define our future. Turning to God and asking for help are choices we can make. From the despair of the psalmist, we move to Romans where we find the result in us from God’s answer to our prayer. Paul is telling the Christians in Rome that when God lives and breathes in you, you are delivered from that despair. A new life filled with the Spirit of Christ raises us up and helps us get on with our lives. We are blessed that there is an answer to the psalmist’s plea for help.

That brings us to the gospel reading in John 6, where Jesus tells us in verses 47 and 48 that whoever believes in him will have real eternal life. “I am the bread of life,” says Jesus in verse 48. Wow! How much clearer do we need to hear that? It is the answer to the psalmist’s prayer.

This Lenten season gives us time to pause to think about the promise of the resurrection and the saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Have you been in the floodwaters? Are you there right now? There is hope through Jesus. Choose to trust in him. Turn to him. And through him grow, mature, become more like him, and finally experience joy in him. Amen.

Alan Denko

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