Monday, October 09, 2006

A God Pause

Monday, 10/9/2006
Amos 5:1-15 (Click to view Bible text below.)

When others criticize or judge you, even when they are right to do so, how do you feel? The natural human tendency is to defend yourself. Defensiveness is one of the most common of human responses - and also one of the least helpful.

What about when others judge you when you are in the wrong? You may still become defensive - a sign that you are not fully admitting the truth (you may even feel defensive as you read these words). Words that attempt to explain, defend and justify are piled higher and higher, but in the end are only a monument to human failure.

The prophet Amos offers a different option: "Therefore the prudent will keep silent in such a time." These are wise words for individuals and whole nations. Amos' time was a moment to take stock, consider both collective and individual injustice, and then change. That is still our task.

Lord, help us keep salutary silence, that your words may break into our hearts, changing us for the sake of others. Amen.

Chris Smith
Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church, Apple Valley, Minn.
Master of Divinity , 1993

No comments: