During difficult times, God’s people have repeatedly prayed, “How long, dear Lord? How long?” This plea for rescue from overwhelming circumstances has been an integral part of Jewish spirituality.
That prayer may have applied to us, too. Especially recently. It’s also an Advent theme: We await a final rescue, the defeat of enemies who have oppressed all of us. We’re bold to send Heavenward our long-standing hope: That God would punish evil so thoroughly that evildoers can’t control our lives any more.
It occurs to me that God has possibly started answering that appeal with one amazing word: “NOW! I’m working on your deliverance RIGHT NOW!”
Where does this thought come from? Paying attention to local, national and international news, I am seeing more clearly some of the ways deliverance is arriving. Right now, in fact! Glimmers of solutions to global warming are getting brighter, more widespread. Dictators and their wannabe acolytes are running scared. Hate merchants are being bankrupted. The market (of users) is beginning to purge social media of some of its egregious flaws. The long arm of the law is picking up transgressors in high places—no names, please—and depositing them in courtrooms. Warmongers are losing, on battlefields and close to home. Non-evangelical evangelicals are losing their clout, audiences and adherents. Loud liars are being quietly exposed for their basic weakness: Liars are weak, egotistical phonies.
All of which brings me to an Advent song, first sung by Hannah (see I Samuel 2:1-10) and echoed strongly by Mary (see Luke 1:46-55). Something about God baring his arm and showing strength. God dragging rulers from their thrones, putting humble people in their place. Sending the rich away empty. It feels like this ancient prayer is being answered. Right here. Right now.
My reaction: MAGNIFICAT!
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