by Rev. Don Schatz
There Is No Choice.
You can listen to today’s devotion by clicking on this SoundCloud link.
….now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.
2 Corinthians 6:2b, New International Version
The first two stanzas of a poem I wrote, some years ago, entitled “Lenten Rite”:
Traditionally fastened, the soul is now with a chastened piety
Smugly, Thursday dawns upon a purple Church
whose forehead bears a black smudge like misplaced mascara.
A rather famous line, from the first of ‘The Matrix’ movies, has a child telling Neo, “There is no spoon.” Neo’s eyes were telling him a lie, which it was very difficult not to receive as reality, let alone truth.
Is today Valentine’s Day or Ash Wednesday? Yes. Not just because the calendar says so. There is no choice. Valentine’s Day is a perfect day for Ash Wednesday. God’s heart is the heart of the Cross. The Cross is God’s heart for us. There is no choice. There is only God’s love for humankind in the person, and work, of Jesus Christ.
Today we begin the journey to retrace the work of those steps of Jesus. Every step drew him closer to the Cross. Was each step harder than the one before, like trudging through loose sand at the beach? Were the final steps stained with red, as blood from his wounds found its way to the pavement under the burden of the Cross? Did the color of Valentine’s Day join the heart of God for us on that day?
There is no choice. The heart of God is the heart of the Cross. The heart of God beats for you. Today, again. It always has. The Cross of Christ marks you as one in whom God’s own heart beats. As surely as if you were baptized today, the sign of the Cross is upon your forehead and heart.
There is no choice. God’s heart beats for you. In Christ, your heart beats with his.
Copyright Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Colorado Springs, CO