Reflection: When I was in middle school, my family lived by a pond. One day in late winter, a friend from the neighborhood knocked on our door to announce that his brother was stuck out on the icy pond. His excursion was very risky, and once he made it out a few yards, fear struck him and he refused to come back. The rescue effort involved a sturdy rope and, for some reason, my father doing a snake-like crawl along the surface of the ice to retrieve him. A memorable image!
As individuals and as a church it is all too easy to wander far from the path to which God calls us. When we look back to the shore and gain some perspective, we may realize that we are putting ourselves and perhaps others at risk of harm. But what then? When we are on thin ice—even when we fearfully acknowledge that we need to turn back—can we find the way back on our own?
Perhaps you can see where this is going, but we need help. Don’t you think? We count on God to show us the right star to follow when we go astray. But God loved us so much that he sent Jesus out on the ice to retrieve us. For God, being born into a fallen world was like venturing out on thin ice: risky. If King Herod had his way, God’s Son may not have lasted long. And we know how the story ends: Jesus’ opponents succeeded in killing him, for just a couple days. But because of His steadfast love and faithfulness, God chose risk and vulnerability. Praise God, because how else could we find our way to solid ground?
Prayer: Merciful God, thank you for taking such an incredible risk, and for accepting suffering in order to rescue us. Guide us back to your paths. Amen
Will Massey, Director of Youth & Mission