Monday, April 16, 2018

Day of Praise

Tues, 04/17/18, Easter Day #17, "Day of Praise"

2 Corinthians 13:11 - "Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you."

If I aimed and swung a billion times, I could not ever again match the notorious feat. Son, Caden, and I were hitting golf balls in the large, grassy, power-line right-of-way that was behind the houses at one of the grandparent's house. At the same time, younger daughter, Cassidy, was swimming all by herself in the neighborhood pool about a hundred and twenty yards away. 

I myself am not a skilled golfer, so when Caden said, "Dad, don't hit the ball toward Cassidy." I said, "Caden, this ball won't hit your sister in a million years." Well, the moment I hit the golf ball with a 7-iron, we saw that we might just as well have played the lottery that day because the ball went high and true and straight on line toward Cassidy. Caden and I just started both screaming, "Cassidy!" and also sprinting toward the pool as we both had visions of her getting knocked unconscious by a direct hit from the golf ball and then drowning in the pool. And sure enough, the ball hit in the pool parking lot about 20 yards from her, bounced high in the air, and, drawn like a fly to honey, hit her squarely on the top of her head.

God love her! Cass yelled out in pain and started dancing in the pool like Elaine on a Seinfeld episode, i.e. not gracefully at all. Fortunately, she wasn't knocked out. But oooooh, did her head hurt for days. And it was all because of my poor aim, coupled with an unbelief in the possibility. 

And this is why St. Paul is inspired by the Holy Spirit to urge us to aim carefully and thoughtfully with our efforts each day. "Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace," writes Paul in 2 Corinthians 13:11. It's as if Paul is recognizing that, without care and thought in a fallen world, the things we do can all too easily harm and injure other people and whack 'em on the top of the head. So "aim for restoration!"

But Paul closes with a great encouragement, noting "and the God of love and peace will be with you." In essence, Paul's also recognizing that in a fallen world, God is alive and well through the crucified and risen Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit. And the reason we need to hear this is because, without such assurance of God's presence, anybody who cared would never do anything. We'd be paralyzed by the fear that every little swing of our club, despite our best aim, was going to wind up hitting and hurting someone. But since "the God of love and peace [is] with [us]," then trusting God to work through all things for good, we're set free to swing away!

So "Aim for restoration" to be sure, but believe all the more that "the God of love and peace [is] with [us]." (2 Corinthians 13:11)

Praise God!

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