Great time with everyone who joined the Zoom call last night. I thought the format worked well, between the discussion and the ability for people to write in comments. We’d welcome any feedback. Unless we get hit with some amazing idea, and assuming everything holds steady till next week (and Lord willing…) we’ll go ahead with another Zoom call next Monday too.
By way of encouragement for the day, Dave Miller shared this bit of a sermon from Arthur John Gossip with me on Friday. I thought it might bless some of you, as it seems pretty timely. The sermon leads off with this quote from the prophet Habakkuk:
If the vision tarry, wait for it, for it will come; and it will not be too late. (Habakkuk 2:3)
Then the sermon begins:
There, to begin with, is a claim on you and me, a warning that if we wish to be really helpful to God and our fellows we must cultivate a certain calm and equanimity of mind, a certain valor and imperturbability of spirit that believes in righteousness and the success of its cause much too stout-heartedly to grow afraid even if things do drag a bit, that knows God far too well to think of doubting Him even if His promises seem slow of foot and our dreams lag and the time grows longer than we hoped.
“The function of religious people,” so [Habakkuk] heard God saying to his heart in dark and trying days when there was not much to encourage, “What is it? What do I set them in the world to do? What is it I ask of them? Is it not largely this—to keep cool and unfidgitey when other folks are growing flustered about things; to look out upon this confusing life with steady eyes when those around them, badly scared, have taken to glancing back across their shoulders, and there is that ominous feeling of panic in the air; to trust Me not only when that is easy and the sun is shining but when there is most need for faith, yes, and some valor in the offer of it?”
Suppose times are disappointing and disquieting, that I [God] seem to have forgotten, appear not to care; that in spite of all your efforts nothing, so you judge, is happening. Still, don’t get nervy and irritable, fussy and on edge…
If we wish to be helpful to God. You ever feel this pull? Let’s follow Mr. Gossip’s lead, and cultivate calm, evenness, and stoutness of heart. What great language. If you are weak—God loves you and he will hold you up. For the rest of us, let’s shake off anything that would weaken us, and seek God’s strength to be pillars he can use.
Be of good courage
And He shall strengthen your heart
All you who hope in the LORD