reading, The Book of Ruth
Our Cor Unum year is closing up, folding its wings over us. Let’s spend this last day together in the solid hope that nothing will be left unresolved, even if the best we can do is to resolve not to abandon that hope! All the battles of 2012 will be won in an instant, in a single choice: We do not lose hope! There is a “summing up” in Christ Jesus that is sure, and our lives are not excluded . . . far from it.
For God had allowed us to know the secret of his plan, and it is this: he purposes in his sovereign will that all human history shall be consummated in Christ, that everything that exists in Heaven or earth shall find its perfection and fulfillment in him. (Ephesians 1:9, 10 Phillips)
Everything that has to do with us has its fulfillment in Jesus Christ. Our children’s lives and future. Our marriages. Our solitude. All “brought together under the authority of Christ.” (verse 11, NLT) Our God “achieves his purposes by his sovereign will.” So, we hope on!
As Naomi found a way that Ruth might have a rich, full life, with a husband (a terrific husband!) and children (a son who would grow to be King David’s grandfather,) it is not possible that we should place ourselves at Jesus’ feet, ask Him to spread His garment over us, and end up disappointed. From finances to family matters, and from the joys of new life to the sorrows of last goodbyes, all things will find their summation in Him.
Anna found a way to the feet of her Redeemer, and, just as for Ruth, her husband’s death was the catalyst. As a young widow, she took up residence in the temple and remained there for the rest of her life, which was at least eighty-four years long. Day and night, with fasting and prayer, she lived under the wing of God, solitary, but never alone. Some of us need to find solitude in a crowded life; some of us need to turn solitude into bliss!
I want to extend the warmest of welcomes to women who find themselves alone at the cusp of this year, whether through death, divorce, deployment, or dire straits! Perhaps, on the other hand, solitude suits you: either way, the Nearness of God is a “loft-y” apartment like no other! We are all privileged to conduct our lives and our hearts in the fullness of life in Christ, and so, welcome to Cor Unum!
Ctny, A Chinese nun ascending steps on Mount Putuo Shan island