Known and Loved – Reflection for 3 February 2019
We encounter the loving kindness, power, and grace of God in our reading from Jeremiah today. We hear that God knew, loved, called, and sent out Jeremiah even before he was born. As Jeremiah was still in the womb God was with him. As God reveals Jeremiah’s calling, Jeremiah responds in doubt and uncertainty. He worries about what people will think of him and how he will be treated. God reassures him that the true power to save and deliver rests in God alone. Finally, God places His words within Jeremiah’s mouth that Jeremiah might proclaim the Truth with great power.
The Good News is that through the Incarnation, Life, Death, Resurrection, and Ascension of Jesus the Christ, each of us can be assured that we were known, loved, called, and sent even before we were born. Although we often respond with the same doubt and fear of Jeremiah, we too can rest in the steadfast love of God and His power to deliver us from all evil. We can know that no matter what the world might say, we are known and loved through Jesus. We are also called and empowered by the Holy Spirit to proclaim this Truth with great power and even greater love.
As I look in the news, I am deeply saddened. I am saddened that we can talk about children who are known and loved by God as a choice rather than a blessing. I am saddened that too often those who speak in the name of Jesus, speak not with love and power but with hate and fear. I am saddened when we denounce sin without proclaiming the forgiveness and deliverance from sin that comes through the Cross and Resurrection.
As I look at the two professions that formed much of my adult life, the Army and veterinary medicine, I am saddened by the high rate of suicide in each. I am saddened that the Truth of God’s love from even before we were born was not heard in these lives. I am saddened that the hopelessness that the world proclaimed was louder than the Hope we proclaim.
As I look at the people of Holy Trinity, I am hopeful. I am hopeful as I see you hear deeply the love of God for you. I am hopeful as you overcome doubt and fear and trust in the steadfast love of God. I am hopeful as the words of love and redemption are placed in your mouths by the Holy Spirit and you proclaim the Truth with great power and even greater love.