February 28, 2017

Lent 2017: Day One

Week One: Actionable Aspirations

Reflection for the Week: God’s goodness is the source that propels leaders into courageous action.

To begin our Lenten meditations with God, our source of strength and courage, we need to go back to where it all began. Wait, go back to where what all began? Let’s be clear. Genesis is not the story of God’s beginning. It is the story of our beginning to know God. God didn’t begin. Everything began from God. Kids often ask, “Who made God?” The answer? No one. The question shows a limited childlike perception of God. It shows the human tendency from the very beginning to try to satisfy our curiosity about God rather than understand God’s care and intentions for us. You won’t get closer to God by getting a clearer definition. Eternal love by its nature gloriously defies the limitations of definition.

When asked in 1989 what book most influenced her during the past year, author Madeleine L’Engle responded: “There is no question that the book that has been most influential for me this past year is the Bible’s first one: Genesis . . . The marvelous story of the creation is for me filled with incredible joy . . . The words shouting all things into being in a great cry of joy. Genesis is also filled with marvelous people – flawed and human – and underlines for me that God does not choose ‘qualified’ people to do the work of love . . . Genesis has everything – all the human vices and glories, love and hate, murder, sacrifice, and a great story. There is no end of plumbing the depths.”

We begin, then, with a God that has always been and will always be beyond our understanding. So why go on this journey for another 39 days? Because we are not trying to understand God. Instead, we are trying to experience God, relate to God and gain courage from God.

Can you define love? Not really. Can you experience love? Absolutely.

This is where we begin, then – with a God who loves us into life.

Prayer: God of love, continue to call us forth into a life of love and courage with you. Amen.