Posted by: AJ the Irish Lass | December 3, 2018

Promises Made and Kept

red lighted candle Photo by Nubia Navarro (nubikini) on Pexels.com

I don’t know about anyone else, but one of the things I can look forward to this Advent season is knowing that this mid-term election cycle is over, for the most part. Promises are always made but seldom kept. I’m most thankful that such promises made by fallen human beings are of a different nature from God’s promises throughout the readings this Advent.

Jeremiah 33:14-16 reminds us of God’s promises, which mean so much more than the empty promises based largely on fear and exclusion that politicians make just to secure another term. The promises of God are covenants, agreements that God has made with both the Jewish people and the Christian community, and these agreements are meant to last.

This theme recurs in Psalm 25:1-9, with assurance in God’s goodness and the forgiveness that we receive because of God’s care. We were never promised an easy path, nor a quick “exit plan” to avoid tribulations. I think St. Francis de Sales summed it up quite accurately:

Do not look forward in fear to the changes in life;
rather, look to them with full hope that as they arise,
God, whose very own you are,
will lead you safely through all things;
and when you cannot stand it,
God will carry you in His arms.

Do not fear what may happen tomorrow;
the same understanding Father who cares for
you today will take care of you then and every day.

He will either shield you from suffering
or will give you unfailing strength to bear it.
Be at peace,
and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.

Jesus and his followers lived in obviously troubling times that made them look to their own redemption, based on Luke 21:25-36. Although some aspects of what I like to call “pop culture” Christianity believe that Christ’s return is about Hollywood epic-style disasters, early Christians believed that it was about the full restoration of God’s creation, something we should hold fast to at all times.

Paul’s letter in 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13, I think, sums up everything about how we should think and act. Will we ultimately be the face of everything that is amiss within modern Christianity, or will we be the type of Christ followers worthy of thanks? It’s our call.

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