Don’t join the rat race. God has different admissions standards.

(iStock/jaker5000)

December 20 / Third Thursday of Advent

Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD? or who may stand in his holy place?
He whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean, who desires not what is vain. ~ Psalm 24:
3-4

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A young couple in my neighborhood who are about to have their first baby are already worried about getting the child on “the list” for the most desirable nursery school in town. They are hardly the exception, as pressures to compete afflict all of us throughout life. Sometimes it seems that there are hoops to jump through at every turn. Want to join a sports team? Show athletic proficiency. Interested in singing in the madrigal group, or procuring a lead role in the play? Better display your singing or acting ability. Heart set on joining that social club or fraternity? You must boast the right sort of social skills. For college admissions, of course, you must have all of the above, presenting a resume that is characterized by depth, breadth and excellence in all facets of your life. It is exhausting and, at times, even soul-killing. Over against the demands of the world, today’s psalm asks us to consider what admissions standards there are into God’s “holy place.” The good news is that they have nothing to do with what we do, and everything to do with who we are. To live in the presence of God, it is not necessary that we write best-sellers, make stellar grades or run a company or a department. We don’t even need to be able to carry a tune or score a goal. Rather, by the grace of God, we strive to be people of integrity and wholeness, faithful in our intent (the psalmist’s clean heart) and honest and loving in our actions (his sinless hands). To orient our thoughts, words and deeds towards God will gain us admission to the most valuable place in the world, God’s holy mountain.

Holy Lord, fashion my hands and heart to your service, this day and forever.Amen.

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Phillip Stone
3 weeks 6 days ago

How can you get away with this twaddle?

There are 7 thousand million people on planet earth and there may be just enough food to avoid starvation if it is evenly distributed - in this fallen world it is not and never will be.

All the young couples who are solicitous about the eventual welfare of their children deserve respect and encouragement, they are doing what no-one else is going to do nor should anyone else be expected to do it for them.

In this decadent age, the lifespans of men and women are falling after a steady rise all over the first world since the end of World War 2.

Go back to the new testament story of the master with three stewards who he gave capital to before he left on business, and then come and tell me they were not judged by their conscientiousness and profitability. Just because you resented parental duties taking you away from your prestigious public persona does not mean that all we parents resented the weariness and exhaustion of child-rearing and protection.

Samanta Kovensky
3 weeks ago

Thanks to the author for discussing such an actual for me topic. My name is Samanta. I'm a student and also I professionally go in for athletics. I believe in God and I'm sure that my faith makes me luckier, more successful, stronger and more confident. I think that the future is ours, girls and women! You know, I have my lucky leggings Flexyfeli in which I attend all regionals. Maybe it looks funny but these leggings are my answer to those who consider women to be underdogs. My faith and my favorite sportswear often bring me success and being a winner.

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