Date: March 28
Lectionary Link: https://www.lectionarypage.net/WeekdaysOfLent/MondayFourthWeek.html
Contributor: Karla Cole
As far as any eye could see
There was no green. But every tree
Was cinder black, and all the ground
Was grey with ash. The only sound
Was arid wind, like spirits' ghosts,
Now gasping for some living hosts
In which to dwell, as in the days
Of evil men, before the blaze
Of unimaginable fire
Had made the earth a flaming pyre
For God's omnipotent display
Of holy rage. The dreadful Day
Of God had come. The moon had turned
To blood. The sun no longer burned
Above, but, blazing with desire,
Had flowed into a lake of fire.
The seas and oceans were no more,
And in their place a desert floor
Fell deep to meet the brazen skies,
And silence conquered distant cries. 1
This could be the hellscape that has become Ukraine and dozens of other places around the globe. And surely God is angry. Angry at us for failing to hear our neighbors’ cries of distress, for failing to act in preservation of the planet, for neglecting the common good, for quarrelling and fighting amongst ourselves, and for making war between nations.
And yet, the prophet Isaiah speaks of a God who will make all things new again and take delight in them. A loving, forgiving, merciful God who offers grace and peace if we but ask.
I am about to create new heavens
and a new earth;
the former things shall not be remembered
or come to mind.
But be glad and rejoice forever
in what I am creating;
for I am about to create Jerusalem as a joy,
and its people as a delight.
I will rejoice in Jerusalem,
and delight in my people;
no more shall the sound of weeping be heard in it,
or the cry of distress. 2
1 from “Glorified” by John Piper
2 Isaiah 65:17-19