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Epiphany 3 – Fortress of Light (Ps 27.1,4-9)


“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Ps 27.1).

What is the stronghold of my life? — My job? My family? My checking account? My political ideology? My gun? My ability to always be right? If my joy in life depends on such things, fear makes perfect sense, because I am relying on things that are inherently unreliable. But the situation changes if I depend instead on the infinite dependable-ness of Jesus, Papa, and Sarayu. Kierkegaard says that “purity of heart is to will one thing.” The psalmist here says that his “one thing” is “to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord” (27.4). He desires only one thing, fears the loss of only one thing—relationship with Papa:

“Do not hide your face from me. Do not turn your servant away… Do not cast me off, do not forsake me, O God of my salvation!” (27.9).

When the Light of the world enlightens us, we come to see that such non-relationship is a cosmic impossibility. To be human is to live and move and have our being in Jesus’ perfectly secure relationship with Papa and Sarayu. This is the true stronghold of life. Fear has no place here.

(The Shack Bible Lectionary – Epiphany 3, Year A)

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