Lectionary readings for today:
For nothing will be impossible with God. Luke 1:37 (NRSV)
I was trained as a scientist before entering seminary. My physics professors and college chaplains knew that I was heading for a parish instead of a lab. And in every corner of campus, whether it be classroom, chapel, planetarium or quad, I experienced the wonder of what God had made and the surprise of what God was still doing. There were marvels to be found in the nuclei of atoms; and there were deep insights shared in a Monday night service. Both science and religion invited me into a world that is full of grace and chaos, and both challenged me to look deeper.
A rational person like me is embarrassed to come face to face with angels wherever I look in the Bible. They are always entering at the strangest times, continually disrupting our settled opinions about how the world and our lives should be. And it would be hard to tell the Christmas story without those “herald angels” singing solos and choruses that sweep us up into the good news for us.
Throughout the Bible, when angels speak
…God is always up to something important
…the world is suddenly alive with the power and presence of God
…we hear over and over the words, “Do not be afraid”
Scientific investigation and faithful searching have always helped me to peer into the darkness and find the light of new revelation. Yet in this season the light comes to us, unexpectedly and sometimes in unsettling ways. I am called to respond, like Mary, to commit myself more fully to what God intends for this world.
Lord, open our eyes, our ears and our hearts to the new life in Christ, making grace and peace possible in every corner of the world. Amen.