Sometimes, in these strange days of pandemic, and rioting in American streets, with often isolation and “lock-down” at home, we feel disoriented, out of place.
Some days feel as if they’ve lost their order. They seem to have lost their definition. A call came to me today saying I had missed a blood-draw appointment. I repented, for sure, and will go back tomorrow.
There are a few little things that fall to me to do, which help me get back on track.
I read a book – a good cowboy story. I take out the garbage and other trash, which Molly has reminded me to undertake. I find a legal pad and begin to write. Something for the website. Something to point my friends as well as me, back to the One Who alone gives real order to the lives of His followers. “Follow Me,” He says. So simple. So strangely forward-looking. A little bit of Jesus’ work and life which so many of us have promised to make our own.
Late at night, the last thing before sleep, I put an extra pillow behind my head, and read a chapter in the Bible. Some of them are quite surprising. Even the great teacher, the Apostle Paul, writes to his churches and says grating things. He uses words like “command” that don’t sound like 1 Corinthians 13. They don’t sound like loving, but rather, ordering, pushing around, things the modern day minister would have to be very careful saying. Things I would find trouble saying to people I cared about and deeply loved.
Then, there are other sentences that soften the tone. And I find I have to ponder the abrupt words of Paul. After all, he was a father in the faith to hundreds, across the ancient world. He was fighting, toe to toe, with might forces of evil which was trying to undo his good work, trying to undercut the great visions of hope he had given so many. He had a right, as God’s servant and messenger, to defend the great truths of God’s love and redemptive power that he had opened up to the conflicted world.
Thankfully, his words have stuck. His truth has proven to be God’s truth. And, it was saving lives across the Roman Empire.
So, I lie there, and think about Paul’s preaching, about his persuasive power, about how I too, need to be strong in whatever words of truth and life I get to declare to today’s conflicted world – even as I prepare to leave it.
I have something to think about as I lie down to sleep. I need to read deeper and deeper in the Bible – a great challenge to me in these Pandemic days.
The Bible has eternal words, which I need to hear. Words positive and powerful as winter comes and snow falls. What better help could I have for facing the winter, and living above it. You, too?
Arthur A Rouner, Jr -
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ARTHUR ROUNER MINISTRIES