This morning at church I volunteered to do the weekly prayer, lifting up the joys and concerns of the congregation. I wanted to share a reflection on Romans 15:13 during this prayer, but I wasn’t terribly prepared and fumbled through embarrassingly when I couldn’t read my own scribbles. The verse reads:
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
When I read this a few weeks ago, I found myself trying to understand what it means to “…abound in hope.” People are always hoping for things. And often that hope, our anticipation and preparation for something, is a big part of what makes it exciting and fun. So we should be taking incredible joy from anticipating and preparing for our ultimate fulfillment in God.
After failing to deliver this little reflection, I sat back down and felt so disproportionately embarrassed that I could hardly pay attention to the rest of the service. I fidgeted and felt self-conscious. I knew it was ridiculous. It was done, and really no big deal at all, but I couldn’t seem to control my (very self-involved) response. Ironic, since the sermon today was about listening for God and making him your focus.
I hope (there’s that word again) that I can eventually overcome such feelings, but if nothing else, those kinds of mistakes are humbling. They make you less judgmental and generally kinder. I was a terribly critical kid. If I’m being honest, I was downright derisive sometimes. I’ve grown out of that, but I think we all still need the occasional reminder to consider the feelings of the people upon whom we animadvert. (Hah! Okay, I confess, I used the thesaurus for that word. But I’ve never heard it before and really wanted to use it! Means “to comment unfavorably or critically.” )
Hope everyone has a great day!