Psalm 79, written for an Israel in exile, often reminds me of my experiences as a Christian in an academic setting. So much of our world here in Charlottesville encourages us to be logical – not faithful to those things that we cannot see. But there are just some things Christians cannot explain with logic. As we prepare for the most illogical holiday in our church year (that dead guy did WHAT?), I thank God for His illogical decisions to choose Abraham and Sarah, to send His only Son to teach all of us, to let that Son die for our redemption.
And in this season of repentance and austerity, I am encouraged to look for the irrational ways in which I can love others. I’d certainly rather spend that $5 on a latte, but I know the church could use it in far more productive ways. I may be more inclined to stay at home when it is dark and cold, but I know that our soup kitchens desperately need volunteers. Our actions, small and large, can never amount to the illogical ways in which God has loved us. But, illogically enough, that shouldn’t stop us from trying to love the world in the same way He first loved us.
God of love, learning, and irrationality, help me to find ways to love others in the same illogical way you have loved me. When I am irritable at the world’s conditions, help me to see all as Your children. Prepare my heart for redemption through Your Son by showing me what I can do for others. Amen.
Margaret E. Thornton