There are those days, and Monday is a good candidate for them, when I am reticent to get on. We find those small places of rest from all the world, perhaps from all that has plagued and plundered us. Or just seems overwhelming. At least a couple things in my life right now I look at with some fear and trepidation.
Those are the days when we realize afresh and anew that life really is beyond us. That we need Jesus to walk with us by the Spirit as we indeed endeavor to follow him. That we are in need of all God has for us in Jesus: his inscripturated word, the church, Holy Communion, fellowship with God’s people. God’s very Presence in a sense of gifting and call. As well as in the realization of changed life.
Being reticent can be good. If it means that we no longer are depending on ourselves, but looking to God’s help in Jesus, through the Spirit who does so directly and indirectly or more precisely directly through others and other means. When we’re reticent, maybe that means we need to be especially cautious and ready to stop and seek to listen, and hear the voice of the Good Shepherd.
We don’t want to be asleep, or complacent, or drifting. Being reticent can be a telltale sign in a bad direction as well. We need discernment from God, regularly praying the prayer of examen, that God would search us and reveal to us any sin or offensive way in us.
But this can be a good time. To humble ourselves in holding back, believing that God may want to do a work in us in Jesus which in a sense is new. A kind of desert experience, akin to the desert fathers and mothers of the early centuries of Christianity. If we see such times in this light, and seek to explore the meaning of this in scripture, we can find God’s way for us in Jesus. In a deeper and more pronounced way on us, changing us.
That is what I wait for this morning and today in Jesus. As we face another week with the normal challenges, as well as difficulties that await us. That others may see Jesus more and more in us. That they may think of him when they see us and rub shoulders with us from day to day. That we may see Jesus in each other. And that the world may see Jesus in us.