October 14, 2009

The Gift of Disappointment [EDITOR'S NOTE: This is an adapted excerpt from Chapter 4 of"Secondhand Jesus". If you like, you just might enjoy the rest of the book! :) Click here to see what Eugene Peterson and others have said about it.] How must it have felt for Israel on the day that they lost the Ark of the Covenant? Not only had they lost friends and fathers, sons and brothers, not only had they lost their leader and sense of certainty and security, they had lost God. Out of the ashes of that devastating day came a question that haunted their nation for years to come: “Where has the glory gone?” In many ways, the loss of the Ark of the Covenant for Israel was just an outward sign of an inward spiritual loss that had occurred long ago. Israel had lost God when they stopped hearing His voice, when they ignored His commands and did “that which was right in [their] own eyes” (Judges 21:25 nkjv). Their attempt to pull God out of hiding and get Him to do their bidding was proof that they had been without God—the one, true, holy, awesome, loving, and terrifying God—long before that day. For us, God is “gone” when we fail to see Him or seek Him. He is “gone” when we treat Him like a lucky charm, a thing to be stowed away in a dusty chest and pulled out only in a crisis. He is “gone” when we insist on letting someone else go to Him for us instead of going to Him ourselves. In all those ways and more, He is “gone” not because He actually left but because we never really let Him be present in our lives. I wonder if He then finds a way to make His absence felt,...

Glenn Packiam

Lead Pastor, new life DOWNTOWN, New Life Church, Colorado Springs, CO. Author and songwriter.

The Typepad Team

Recent Comments