There is no denying that there is joy in the gospel, but sometimes I am surprised by how hard it is to live in the gap between the promise and the perfection. There are times when, despite the waters of my baptism behind me and the promise of the Reign of God before me, I find myself standing in a place that seems dry and lifeless.
On the evening news, I hear that once again, someone has blown himself up in the midst of a crowd. I hear the word cancer and the name of a good friend in the same sentence. There are arid valleys everywhere. Sometimes the desert is even in my own heart, when I feel the weight of all those things that I have done and left undone.
I want to sparkle, drenched with baptismal waters, but sometimes there is barely enough love and mercy around to dampen my parched lips. God, be with me in these times. Help me to see your joy even in the arid valleys of life.
This message is adapted from “Dry Bones & the Rattle of Hope” written by Serena S. Sellers in the Jan/Feb 2007 issue of Lutheran Women Today (now Gather magazine). Today we remember Columba, who died 597; Aidan, who died 651; Bede, who died 735; renewers of the church.