Just Keep Singing

November 3rd, 2007 • Category: Encouragement, Variety Week
by Keith Phillips

Today’s scripture: I John 4:16-19 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two.

My thoughts (Keith Phillips):

Why do I worry so much? Why am I too often afraid?

My guess is that, in part, it’s a fear of the unknown combined with a known dynamic of cause and effect. As one into whom western linear logic has been ingrained, I am easily convinced that the bad stuff that happens to me is a result of previous bad choices and bad actions. The corollary to this is that, since I know myself to be imperfect, frequently feeling like a misfit by this world’s standards, facing the potential consequences of what I do is not a pretty picture.

But then, there is the grace of God. For some reason, and I really can’t tell you why, God seems to love me. I assure you it has nothing at all to do with what I have done or not done, with having followed the rules. It seems that God simply loves me, just as I am.

And this is the Creator and Sustainer of the cosmos who loves me! God is not bound by western linear logic. God is above that, and God demonstrates that regularly in my life with serendipitous surprises every day. God’s grace forgives me, restores me, and empowers me. I am a living example that good things, wonderful things, blessed things, transforming things happen to bad people, imperfect people, people who are misfits.

Remembering that is the trick, though, because I’m surrounded with voices and experiences that scream at me that I am not good enough, that I haven’t followed the rules, that I fail, I don’t deserve to be loved. All day long I must refocus on God, and on God’s perfect love which casts out fear.

Evening is fast becoming one of my favorite movies. Vanessa Redgrave stars as a dying mother who reviews her long life from her death bed. She worked in New York clubs, singing for “drunks and tourists;” but at the end she looks back and says, “There are no mistakes; just keep singing.”

Thought for the day: I know God loves me. How will I see God’s hand at work today, transforming my “mistakes,” as I keep singing?

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

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"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10
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