November 6, 2014: Lukewarm Bride
‘Because you are lukewarm—neither hot or cold—I will spit you out of My mouth. You say, “I am rich and don’t need a thing.” But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked.’ (Rev. 3: 16, 17)
Compromised, the Samaritan ‘bride’ was willing to admit her sickness and turn toward her cure. Her apparent shamelessness masked a deep shame. Jesus gently uncovered this shame and she surrendered to Him. She needed and wanted His cover. And that was His very purpose for exposing her shameful nakedness–to extend His love as her source and shield.
How beautiful are persons like the Samaritan woman who do not dodge the light of Love! Instead of defending themselves, they offer themselves to that Light. We are surrounded by persons who rant and rave over their extramarital sexual rights; let us not forget about the quiet minority who before the Crucified weep over their shame. The mournful receive a comfort that eludes the libertine.
No wonder that persons driven by misbegotten passions often become the most passionate for Jesus! Understanding desire, they welcome the Author of desire when their eyes see Him. ‘Living water’ means something to hungry, broken hearts. Passionate ones may recognize acutely their need for divine forgiveness and fulfillment.
Such passion may dim for the ‘churched’–cradle Catholics and seasoned evangelicals who readily grow accustomed to His face. Now content with going through the ‘motions of devotion’, we lose real emotion, real heart in our daily engagement with Jesus. Saved, we cease getting saved. We overcome felonies only to accommodate a host of misdemeanors. What happened to the fire that exposed our sin and caused us to weep over it? Should not that sin become more apparent, not less, the closer we draw to Him? Jesus save us: We have gained religion only to lose You!
We who sin quietly may be more at risk of losing our salvation than bold sinners. St. John Vianney says it best: ‘There are many who appear to be good Christians
but in the sight of God, who knows our intentions, are but lukewarm…Those who live in lukewarmness are in greater danger than those who live in mortal sin. A sinner laments his condition when his conscience awakens. He even longs to leave his sinful life and will leave it someday. But a soul which lives in lukewarmness never thinks of quitting that state become he thinks he stands well with God.’
Let’s wake up and follow the example of the Samaritan ‘bride.’ Jesus, would You rouse us with living water? Like her, may we witness in Your eyes our shameful nakedness, as well as our cleansing and covering? Align our passions with Your passion, our cure.
‘Jesus said to the Pharisees: ‘The tax collectors and prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you.’ (Matt. 21:31)
Please join us as we pray for:
1. Pacific Northwest Region, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Alaska: Dean Greer – Coordinator: For new regional leadership to be identified and raised-up, and for the new group in Portland.
2. Living Waters Shanghai: For team unity, and wisdom in logistical decision making as they prepare to announce and take applications for the LW group beginning late February, 2015.
3. Kansas City/St. Joseph Diocese Courage and Encourage group(s): For an increase in local KC chapter of Courage/Encourage.
“Courage for Reverend Justin Welby (Archbishop of Canterbury), that he would ensure that the Church becomes a clear fountain of transformation for persons with same-sex attraction!”