“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” – Psalm 23:6 (Revised Chinese Union Version)
In “A Way Other Than Our Own,” author Walter Brueggemann reminds believers that the season of Lent is a time for being caught and embraced by love. God does not want our lives to be burdened with endless anxiety, but rather to be accepted, embraced, and caught by God’s love. He quotes Psalm 23:6, “I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever,” reflecting a mature life where each person in a community of justice returns to their human position: “The true joy and purpose of life is to love the Lord and be loved by the Lord, not just by ourselves, but in union with the community.”
The author describes “following” as a powerful and active verb. God’s great love pursues us, but we fear and escape, because we are afraid that everything will no longer be in our control. We cannot believe in such a generous love, because we will be overwhelmed by God’s mercy. Lent is a time for us to realize our blindness and regain our sight.
Through meditating on Scripture, God invites us during this time to look with a different perspective beyond our anxiety, greed, fear, and control, to see ourselves as a sheep of the Good Shepherd, a traveler passing through the village of God, and a citizen of the house of the Lord. When we see clearly in this way, we will become free, joyful, generous, and grateful. We only need to hope for one thing: God’s presence. We will no longer be hindered by false, insignificant desires.
Lord, please pursue us and catch us! Please embrace us with your mercy and grace. Amen.
Written by Cheui Yi (At Will)