Thursday, August 07, 2008

That We May Be Accounted Worthy To Hear

By Cynthia Lewis

It’s amazing how you can hear something being said again, and again, week after week, and then one day, it hits you out of the blue. That’s what happened to me on Sunday when I heard “That we may be counted worthy to hear the holy Gospel . . . “
I suppose, growing up as I did in the USA, where there was a Family Bible on our coffee table and where each family member had our own personal copy of the KJV, it never occurred to me that there was anything special about hearing it. I mean, we were supposed to hear it! Mom read it at the dinner table each night. We memorized it in Vacation Bible School. We drew pictures of it in Sunday School. But to “be counted worthy to hear,” that’s something else again. How can anyone ever be worthy enough to hear God speak?

It’s a trick question. Because the only way to truly understand how much God values us, is to reach that point where we truly understand how this value is based on His love for us – that is what gives us worth. I like the Good News version of St. Paul’s explanation of Love: “When you love someone, you will always believe in them, always expect the best out of them, and always stand your ground in defending them.” That is the quality of love we are to have for our Lord. But if “we love Him because He first loved us,” then He also has this quality of love for us.

It blows me away to think that God believes in me. The One who knows me better than anyone else, the one who sees me “warts and all,” still believes that He made something good – something worth taking the time with, something worth saving.

It humbles, excites, and even frightens me a little, to know that He expects great things from me. Regardless of my endless stream of failures, regardless of my selfish little pity parties, regardless of how long it takes me to “gear up” for a new spiritual discipline. He still expects great things to flow from my life.

It is an unbelievable comfort to me that he defends me daily. Not just from the dangers in this life, but He daily defends me before the “accuser of the brethren,” and isn’t ashamed to tell him to “back off – she’s Mine!”

There’s a lot I don’t know about Orthodoxy, but I do know a thing or two about children. I know when you show them the kind of love that values them, challenges them and protects them, they grow into people who want to know what you have to say. As God’s children, it’s only natural for us to always want to know what He has to say. “Let us attend.”

NOTE: Cynthia Lewis is the wife of Nathan Lewis of Journey To Orthodoxy.

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