Thursday of the Fifth Week of Lent
April 2, 2020
Today, in Mercy, Yahweh is very clear with Abram that he is now in a life-changing situation:
My covenant with you is this:
you are to become the father of a host of nations.
No longer shall you be called Abram;
your name shall be Abraham,
for I am making you the father of a host of nations.
Having witnessed how young fathers are upended by the news of impending fatherhood, I can’t even imagine what Abraham felt like when he heard this:
I will render you exceedingly fertile;
I will make nations of you;
kings shall stem from you.
But aside from the practical ramifications of God’s promise, what Abraham is invited to is a whole new outlook on the world. God lays out before him a vision of the ages, infinitely beyond the confines of Abraham’s current understanding.
It is an existence beyond time and human definition. It is the infinite place of God’s timelessness, where we all exist, but forget when we are born. Our lifetime is a spiritual journey back to remembrance.
In our Gospel, Jesus uses a rather cryptic phrase as he challenges his listeners to look beyond their circumscribed perspectives:
Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever keeps my word will never see death….
Abraham your father rejoiced to see my day;
he saw it and was glad.
By fully embracing his covenant with God, Abraham saw beyond death. The vision of heaven was opened to him and he lived his life by its power. He lived then within the Day of the Lord, not within any small confined reality.
Jesus offers us the same invitation. We can choose to see with God’s eyes, or with only our own. We can choose to live within God’s infinity, or in only our own earthbound borders.
In our current global situation, when time has lost its shape and days silently morph into one another, it may be a good time to remember the eternal character of our heart. It may be time to have a sit-down with God about our covenant, like the conversation God had with Abraham.
Music: In the Day of the Lord – M.D. Ridge