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4.17.2006    |    Thy will be done
Happy New Year, fellow Christians. We are reminded that Easter is the first day of the church year, and, as the trite saying goes, the first day of the rest of our lives. More importantly, the first Easter was the start of the Messianic Era, the time we are in, waiting, waiting, for Christ to come again.

In the meantime, here's the suggestion of our pastor for a New Year's prayer. It's quite simple, actually, and will always be true: Thy will be done. That's God's will. Not our own will.

This is the essence of how the Lord taught us to pray (Matthew 6:9-13): Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Now, for all of the special relationship that Jesus had with His Father, He still prayed this basic prayer: Thy will be done. Even when Jesus struggled, at Gethsemane (Matthew 26:36-42), with the certain knowledge of His heinous death on the cross, He prayed that God's will be done.

Jesus knew what the Father's will was. We are only human, and quite less than perfect. "Thy will be done" is easy enough to say, and to pray. The problem is that it is sometimes far from clear what God's will might be.

Scripture usually has an answer, and the Holy Spirit steps up (sometimes) and lets us know, in no uncertain terms, what God's will might be in a particular situation. But, as we all know, there are times when, pray as we might to know what God expects of us, we just do not know.

My advice is to listen more, speak less -- perhaps we'll hear what God wants of us. And be very wary of thinking that we can know with any kind of certitude in every situation what God's will might be.

Oh, and last point: don't be surprised if we find out that God really doesn't care if we get that promotion at work, or if we can't afford to drive a Mercedes. Or if we are called to suffer as our savior suffered.

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Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Fine sentiments--His will be done. And this may be a niggling point, but isn't Advent the beginning of the church year?

7:22 AM, April 19, 2006  
Anonymous John Luke said...

Yes, technically, Advent is the beginning of the church year. But just as we are reborn in Jesus' resurrection at Easter, so the church is, spiritually. It may be considered to be starting its journey through the current, Messianic, age.

The reality is, I suspect, much larger than any of our artificial divisions of time into liturgical segments. I prefer to think that the church, and us, are part of God's seamless garment of time. Or, in the words taken from Catholic liturgy, "as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be."

2:20 PM, April 19, 2006  

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About this site and the author

Welcome. My name is John Luke Rich, (very) struggling Christian. The focus here is Christianity in its many varieties, its fussing and feuding, how it impacts our lives and our society, with detours to consider it with other faiths (or lack thereof).

Call this blog my way of evangelizing on the internet.

Putting it differently, we're only here on this earth a short time. It's the rest of eternity that we should be most concerned about. Call it the care and feeding of our souls.

I was born Jewish, and born again in Christ Jesus over thirty years ago. First as a Roman Catholic; now a Calvinist by persuasion and a Baptist by denomination. But I'm hardly a poster boy for doctrinal rigidity.

I believe that Scripture is the rock on which all Christian churches must stand -- or sink if they are not so grounded. I believe that we are saved by faith, but hardly in a vacuum. That faith is a gift from God, through no agency on our part -- although we sometimes turn a deaf ear and choose to ignore God's knocking on the door.

To be Christian is to evangelize. Those who think it not their part to evangelize perhaps haven't truly understood what our Lord told us in Matthew 28. We must preach the Gospel as best we are able. Using words if necessary.

Though my faith waxes and wanes, it never seems to go away. Sometimes I wish it would, to give me some peace of mind. But then, Jesus never said that walking with Him was going to be easy...

Final note: I also blog as Jack Rich on cultural, political and other things over at Wrong Side of the Tracks

Thanks for stopping by.