THE ‘LET’ OF LENT – Monday, March 8th
Let me abide in your tent forever, find refuge under the shelter of your wings.
Psalm 61:4 (NRSV)
Then Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here;
let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”
Mark 9:5 (NRSV)
When my son was six years old, our family saw the Disney animated movie, Tarzan, at the theater. As Phil Collins sang, “You’ll Be in My Heart” during the final credits, he came down the row to give me a hug. This was such an unforgettable and tender moment! Since then, that song has held a special meaning for us.
Years later, we sat on the front porch and shared our parting words of blessing and love, as he and our son-in-law were about to move to California. We knew that distance and time would keep us separated for longer than we would like. I worried about their safety as they would drive across the country; my tears were fresh and full. But I repeated the familiar lyrics, “You’ll be in my heart… just look over your shoulder…” Our love would keep us connected – always. (I get emotional again when I remember this moment. With the pandemic, we have been unable to see each other for over a year and a half now.)
Our spiritual invitation for today is to Let us abide in the goodness of God. In Psalm 61, the writer asks to abide in God’s tent forever, to find a refuge in God’s shelter. And in Mark 9, after Peter witnesses the incredible moment of Jesus’s transfiguration, he too, wants to remain with this goodness of God. “Let us make three dwellings!” But soon he is following Jesus, James, and John back down the mountain.
Oh, those precious moments when we wish to “stay here forever!” They are the moments of love, joy, peace, clarity, beauty, or inspiration. They are the times when life feels so perfectly right, when we feel deeply connected with others, when we are very aware that we are experiencing a rare and incredible gift. We want to stay and abide in all the goodness God is shining upon us.
But then we are called to go on. At times, we are called to leave the exhilaration and serve in the normalcy. Other times, we are called to part with loved ones and hold them in our hearts until we are reunited. We may be called to leave our serenity and take on new challenges. Life never stands still.
You already know the good news in all of this. God abides with us, wherever we go. As the psalmist writes, we are forever sheltered under God’s wings. We may be nomads, but God is our tent. Most of all, the best of what we have experienced has changed us and remains with us, always. Love is eternal. Love will remain. Love will always be with us.
Just look over your shoulder…
Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you will abide in the Son and in the Father. 1 John 2:24 (NRSV)
May we let God call us to new adventures, always trusting that God’s love will provide for us, remain with us, and abide in us, wherever we go.
Our Bible readings for tomorrow are Psalm 141:1-2 and Philippians 4:6.
Photo by Scott Goodwill on Unsplash
Bible verses found at https://classic.biblegateway.com/