“Here we are, you and I, and I hope a third, Christ, is in our midst.”
Aelred of Rievaulx, 12th Century
Look, he is coming with the clouds! Every eye will see him, including those who pierced him, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of him. This is so. Amen. “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “the one who is and was and is coming, the Almighty.”
These should be some of the most comforting verses in Scripture: Jesus the Christ is coming to save everyone, even those who were responsible for his death. Mercy and justice will never disappear; those who were enemies will become friends; hostilities and cruelties will be replaced by peace and kindness. It is an incredibly unifying vision for all humanity; yet because most of us have never seen such a vision, even those of us who are deeply faithful may find the assurances hard to believe.
Think about a day when the Middle East and other insecure places in our world will no longer constantly be at war. Refugees who are currently homeless and wandering will not be turned away from any border. TV and internet images of a young Syrian child lying dead on a beach will no longer break our hearts.
Shouldn’t we commit ourselves and our energies to bringing about a peaceful world for all?
Wouldn’t that be the ultimate celebration in this season of Thanksgiving?
God of Unity, give us the courage and compassion to break down walls and hostilities, so that we might live together in the peaceable kingdom that God envisions for all people. Amen.
“Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves. […] Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.”
Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet, 1929