I came to Florida this week, not to staple and hammer, but to celebrate my sister's fortieth birthday and my niece's eleventh. When I think about the good relationships I have with my family now, I also remember those days growing up when they weren't so good: the misunderstandings, the quick tempers and tongues, the regret of things said or left unsaid. It took us a long and tumultuous journey to get to the good place we are now. It is not perfect, of course, but there are unexpected moments of grace that make me grateful and hopeful. That day on the ladder was one of them. Many families have similar stories. The good (or bad) relationships we have are fashioned by our choices and experiences, and yet I'd like to think that God has some hand in them. The Bible is full of stories of divine messengers (from the Greek, angeloi = "messengers") or angels communicating God's word and will to humans. I'm sure there were hasty moments when I did not heed God's advice to hold my tongue or to bear with patience a difficult conversation. There were undoubtedly urgings from God that I ignored in order to follow my own flawed judgment. I bear full responsibility for those failings, but I am grateful that God did not give up on me and continued to whisper in my ear and inhabit my dreams. And so does God with us all.
|"Jacob's Dream" by William Blake, 1805.|
The Lord is glorified in his holy ones; O, come, let us adore him.