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Sunday, August 17, 2014

Riches I heed not,
not vain, empty praise;
thou mine inheritance,
now and always;
thou and thou only,
first in my heart,
High King of Heaven,
my treasure thou art.

Mary E. Byrne’s “Be Thou My Vision”
from Glory to God: The Presbyterian Hymnal

Reflection
I am always amazed at humanity’s resilience in the face of tragedy, be it natural disasters, heinous crime, epidemics, war, poverty, or political suffering. I look at the faces of the victims of these catastrophic events and wonder how they can go on. How can they continue to get up in the morning after experiencing loss in such a big way? How can people live on when they’ve lost the things they cherish so much—their homes, their families, their money, pets, possessions, even the little sentimental “treasures” that lifted their spirits in tough times. Then I wonder, what are my “treasures”?

 Admittedly, there are things in my life I cling to, both in good times and hard times. If I couldn’t run, I sometimes feel like I would go crazy. There’s no better anecdote for my sadness then cuddling with my cats or venting to my best friend. And I’ll fess up to a strong need for affirmation and praise in areas where I shouldn’t care what people think. But what inside me do I hold fast to when I’m so full of anxiety that I feel as if I can’t make it another minute, when none of the tangible things in my life can comfort me?

The words to Mary E. Byrne’s hymn “Be Thou My Vision” sum up the answer to this perfectly. I cling to God, the God we have all inherited through God’s promise to us. The answer is the One that lives in my heart now and always, even when
I ignore him or let my own “stuff” take priority (which is too often!). Yet the times when life forces me to reach out and ask for God’s help in desperation, the blanket of comfort I receive every time goes so far and above my request that I’m puzzled as to why I think my ways are better. But I am human, and I’m pretty sure I haven’t made my last mistake. And I trust God will still be there for me.

Prayer
Lord, help me to feed the relationship I have with you by seeking you in good times and in my darkest hours, so that I may know you better and trust more completely in your love. Amen.

Written by Patty Donmoyer, Receptionist


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