Listen to this week’s Devotional here.
Author: Carolyn Gard
At a coffee shop the other day I watched a woman with her three-year-old. The mother was doing something on her phone, while her little boy was playing a game on an ipad. Not only was he working on the game, he was wearing headphones. Perhaps the mother was making sure that his game didn’t disturb the other customers. However, by putting headphones on him she was shutting out the world from him, and shutting him out from the world. Certainly there’s a time when kids need to learn from playing games, but a three-year-old shouldn’t be sitting there wrapped up in his own world; he has too much to learn from observing.
I’m sure you can guess where this anecdote is taking us. Too often we put on virtual earphones and virtual blinders so we don’t have to listen to what God is trying to tell us. We can stay in our own world and look away when a homeless person holds up a cardboard sign at a traffic light, when thousands of refugees flee from their homes, when hungry children can’t learn, when yet another gun control bill is struck down.
We are divided into three kinds of people. First, there are those who keep their headphones and blinders on and profess not to hear or to see a thing. Second, there are those who take their headphones and blinders off and open themselves to God’s will, but stop at that point. Third, there are those who take off their headphones and blinders. They look God squarely in the eye – metaphorically — and ask, “What do you want me to do?” They listen, and, more importantly, they act.
Of course, it’s easy to say that we want to be in the third group, the ones who hear God’s will and act on it. But don’t kid yourself, it’s tough. Heeding God’s will takes us out of our comfort zone, makes us stand up for ideas that may not be mainstream, makes us question. Yet we know that, whatever discomfort we feel, we are doing the right thing.
God, give us the strength to listen to your will and to act on it. And comfort us as we strive to make this a better world. Amen