The Faithful Remnant

11 Feb

Good morning,

Well, I was trying to complete my blog through Lent, but yesterday it not work out the way I planned.  So much of life doesn’t!   But, I am starting today.

I desire for this Lenten season to be a meaningful one and I am adding and subtracting from my daily life to open and prepare myself for the divine presence.   I am adding: daily blogging, reading one spiritually inspiring book, and 20 minutes of meditation time.  I am subtracting: CHOCOLATE!  It is amazing how much more I think about God when I think about not eating chocolate, and I am really, really looking forward to Easter, resurrection, and CHOCOLATE.   (Maybe this is a clue as to what really owns my life.)

There is a wonderful story in Joan Chittister’s Rule of Benedict.  A disciples asks the  master if all the spiritual discipline he is learning will bring God’s revelations into his life.  The master reply no, “no more than you can make the sun to rise.”  The disciples replies, “then why am I doing learning all this spiritual discipline?”.  The master says, “so you wil be ready when the sun rises.”  I want to be ready, open, listening when the sun rises.

We are up to Chapter 11 in the Book of Romans.  Paul continues to talk about Israel’s turbulent relationship with God.  He emphasizes that God will not abandon the Jewish people. AND even in the midst of Israel’s unfaithfulness, God was faithful and there was always a small remnant of God’s people that remained.

11 1-2 Does this mean, then, that God is so fed up with Israel that he’ll have nothing more to do with them? Hardly. Remember that I, the one writing these things, am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham out of the tribe of Benjamin. You can’t get much more Semitic than that! So we’re not talking about repudiation. God has been too long involved with Israel, has too much invested, to simply wash his hands of them.

2-6 Do you remember that time Elijah was agonizing over this same Israel and cried out in prayer?

God, they murdered your prophets,
They trashed your altars;
I’m the only one left and now they’re after me!

And do you remember God’s answer?

I still have seven thousand who haven’t quit,
Seven thousand who are loyal to the finish.

It’s the same today. There’s a fiercely loyal minority still—not many, perhaps, but probably more than you think. They’re holding on, not because of what they think they’re going to get out of it, but because they’re convinced of God’s grace and purpose in choosing them. If they were only thinking of their own immediate self-interest, they would have left long ago.

As I read this text this morning I thought about my Ash Wednesday services yesterday.  I had 6 people at noon at my mountain church and 10 people in the evening at my town church.  The great thing about being where I am today is that I do not worry about the numbers.  There were a faithful few who were willing to brave the cold and prepare their hearts, so that they too might be ready when the sun rises.

I have come to believe that the sum of our lives are in each moment that we can open our lives to the divine presence and interdependently with the rest of the Divine’s creation.

I pray for you as you continue this journey of Lent with me, through the wildness, listening with the ear of your heart for the small, still voice.

Peace

 

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One Response to “The Faithful Remnant”

  1. Phyllis Terwilliger February 11, 2016 at 10:30 pm #

    I look forward to the journey!

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