If…you have acted in good faith then rejoice… Judges 9:1-16, 19-21 When we make choices based solely on what is said we sometimes experience outcomes on what was left unsaid. Once, stepping out of my introverted box I had an uncomfortable encounter, which left me with an unfavorable opinion concerning a certain person I had approached. Later, I went back and forth trying to figure out what I had done wrong to experience what felt like a negative interaction. From someone with high notoriety I had anticipated a totally different experience. What I didn’t realize at the time was that at various times, we all are at the edge of stepping out of some kind of box; either ones we’ve created for ourselves or ones created by those around us. I had created a box of expectations from this person that God certainly did not ask me to create. Though I rejoice in knowing that I was able to go forth in faith to take the opportunity for our paths to cross, each time I am so called, I remember to leave the box of expectation in God’s hands and simply enjoy the moment.
…perfect love casts out fear… 1 John 4:7-21 Truly, who among us can perfectly love? Who among us walks without the occasion of some doubt? Who among us occasionally reconsiders decisions to be made or regrets decisions already fulfilled? As much as we strive towards this perfection it is not ours to perfectly attain. Try as we might there is always some wonder if we’ve done the right things or if we are moving in the right direction. How is the fear ever removed? If we could live with perfect love – would not the world be a perfect place? We have to settle for striving for perfection and recognize that we will make mistakes. When we make mistakes we must learn to forgive ourselves. Christ, the perfect love of the Father, understands this about us. Himself, called to the people of Israel, time and again stepped out of his own box to which he was called, to heal, bless and forgive those who brought their faith before him. So too we are called to love, knowing that what ever our dreams, desires, frustrations or fears, God’s perfect Love for his creation encourages us to continue striving towards him in spite of our imperfectness and because of our faith in him.
Image Credit: Kerry Shook; worshiphousemedia.com