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Isaiah 62:1

For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent,
and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest,
until her vindication shines out like the dawn,
and her salvation like a burning torch.

Beginning anew

Microsoft Word crashed and ate all my devotions for this week. I have searched the recovery files and there is nothing there. I left my apartment because of the noise from my neighbors, so my “time machine” was not connected. I cannot recover what I wrote.

I was on a roll. I really liked them. They moved nicely from one to another. And now they are gone. It is hopeless. I can’t rewrite them. I have to begin anew.

The power to save, the power to fix our troubled world and our troubled hearts does not lie in our own hands. We can do better. We can be kinder. We can try harder to care for the earth. But how do we fix the human heart? How do we bring an end to hate and fear and all the great and little greeds that shadow us. There are no recovery files for us to resurrect and begin anew. It’s not a matter of tweaking the gene code (a frightful thought) or changing the school curriculum. It’s not a matter of simple exhortation and good will (How many times did my mother tell us children not to fight?). Something deep and profound needs to happen in us. Something needs to be reborn. We need to begin anew.

It is here, in this painful and terrible awareness that we cannot fix this, that the wonder and grace of the prophetic word shines. For God “will not keep silent.” God “will not rest.” God is determined to give new birth to the world. God is determined to give new birth to our hearts.

There is a future for us. Not the future we want to write, but the future God will write. And through this week we get a glimpse of the work God is doing, the price God is paying, and the new humanity God is creating in us. It is humbling. But it is also wonderful.

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