March 17, 2019

by Nathan Malone

Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18; Psalm 27; Philippians 3:17-4:1;  
Luke 13:31-35 
In each of these Scriptures for today, there is some sense of “not yet” in them.  Abram questions God about both descendants and land which have been promised, but are not yet his.  Jesus will not be distracted from his destination in Jerusalem and what is going to happen there.  Paul speaks of a citizenship in heaven that is both present and not yet.  The Psalmist offers words of trust and confidence in the Lord, while also saying “Do not cast me off, do not forsake me.”  I can hear in that Psalm the man who said to Jesus “I believe; help my unbelief.”   
Throughout life, we face times of faith and times of doubt and questions.  We face times of wondering if God still hears our prayers.  We face times of being distracted from our mission.  I believe God is working to transform the world, but it seems a long way off.  What do I do with that in the difficult moments and seasons of life? 

Two verses in these texts connect to guide us.  The Psalmist writes “Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!”  And Paul encourages the people of Philippi with these words:  “Stand firm in the Lord in this way...”, a way he describes most fully in the “Philippian hymn” of chapter two. 
Be strong and courageous in living, loving and serving the way Christ taught us.  Stay focused on the mission he gave us, even as we wait for the transformation that is “not yet.”  

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