Paul’s conversion; is today, Jan 25th traditionally a memorial of that? How the heavenly event is mirrored; Saul, full of venom and legal perfectionism, becomes Paul, subject of mercy and Grace, and so suitable then as an instrument of God’s Salvation to the gentiles. The Holy Son of God was prepared for the sake of redemption to come and be made flesh in filth and even cursed as he took on sin, separation from the father, death. But He took victory from flesh, sin and death’s grasp for ever. Is now glorified with the Father and has dominion over every authority. The image on his side of the mirror is way bigger than Saul’s!
Ydy, hefyd, Dydd Santes Dwynwen yw e.
And what have I besides these?
I have received this same mercy. Can I imagine it like a robe? I can put it on and walk about in it. Imagine, the same robe of acceptance in the name of Jesus, as worn by the new apostle 20 centuries ago. Available for what price at Christies? Imagine the status, gained from being the one who could reach the top bid!
No need. I can’t buy this robe. It is bought at greater price than any multi billionaire can ever afford. As a fact, it hardly sinks in, but I know it is true and when I give this fact my attention and try to receive it my ‘humbleometer’ goes off the scale. I would probably die or become superhuman before I could comprehend the magnitude of this mercy and grace.
Yet dully perceiving, I’m skipping trying to get my head round it completely and I’m just asking this Holy God to hear these prayers. Just assuming he wants to answer because we’re related. He has become my Dad. I have become his child. (Yet the mind still boggles.)
I have been sorely pushed on the topic of evangelism. Please help me to overcome the accusations and guilt. Please just make it possible somehow for me to do the right thing. In relationship. I’m not an automaton and neither are any of the people I meet who know my belief. I believe God can speak to them in ways that I can’t. I can explain myself to anyone who asks. I cannot ram my faith down the throats of people who don’t want to share any of this ‘bread’ I have. They reckon thay have ‘steak’ and they pity my attempts to show them any banquets of truth and beauty and freedom. So courtesy commands discretion.
And in this context I ask for the salvation of Demitri and his parents. My parents. The Chippy’s parents and all their children and grandchildren. The tetrarch’s brother.
I thank you for the salvation of all the other family close to us and ask for blessing and protection. I thank you for our Esther and ask that all the price in suffering she pays, all the tears and loneliness be recorded. Because you do see and I ask for her name to be honoured in your Honour and her eternal footprint to be followed for generations to come. I trust that your righteousness and promices will be fulfilled in her life and she will have peace and safety because of her fellowship with Jesus.
Please give peace and foresight to the Chippy today. Let his work be good and your grace flow through him to the people he meets. Guard his heart that your life may be ever flowing through him. Give him sustainance in his inner man. Let him not slip or be turned from your ways, in the least detail.
Protect the Cherub with your love. Let no stress be harmful to her at work. Keep her confidence in you resiliant. Lead her in her thinking, please. Let her seek and hear your guidance in all the matters before her. Please Lord hear this prayer. Her life is so precious and You alone know what is best. I call on you for wisdom for her and let her love of you and your love of her shape her thinking and her character every day. Thank you.
This also for the Tidge. Keep her clarity and integrity in a safe place in her heart. Let no false ideas steal her inheritance in you. Let her be refreshed and find joy and peace with you and your people, as she stays close to You and your sources of Grace. Help her sleep and work. Bless her.
Please continue to watch over the Shuster and his path ahead. Let each step be secure in you. Let him lead others into pleasant places, learning from you and finding peace and their purpose. Please guide him in work and into the coming year, teaching him all he needs to know, and how to serve you with integrity. Guard him and protect him. Let him be alert, and trust you for all he will need.
Protect the weak and disenfranchised in our society. Help them not to become bitter so that even blessings are rejected. Let all who have and share, be blessed. Let all who want discover what they have and be blessed. Provide for the lonely what they lack, whether it be confidence to befriend, transport, warmth, interests in common. Take away prejudice in our society, but let each be willing to share with others and Lord, as all the people who know you ask for your Kingdom to come on earth as it is in Heaven, let it make a difference. let good overcome evil, one heart at a time. In Jesus’ name.
All this for Haiti. As with failing to understand Grace, fully, my mind reels at the suffering and the scale of the disaster. I can’t take it into little peices and rationalise. It is too big. God is bigger. Say that to any one of the people suffering from my western armchair. How could I? I do believe he is bigger. How does that translate? I can only pray. Thank Goodness only he can look them in the eye and say he knows and cares. I don’t have to say it on his behalf. It was the same with the Boxing Day tsunami. Thank you God for all the people, powerless and drawing on your power to face the problem and start to pull one person at a time out of the rubble. Thank you for the generosity of the destitute with a tap towards the destitute with no tap….God have mercy, and over to You. oh no..one more thing. Please let the politicians keep their promices. For the people’s sake.
Tomorrow it’s inspection day. Please let it go well. Please guide my decisions here. Thank you for the barn owl. Give him very succesful hunting over the gardens. Help us at HyC tonight, and be honoured in all we do.