“Teach me you way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name.”- Psalm 89:11
“If God were small enough to be understood, he wouldn’t be big enough to be worshipped.”- Evelyn Underhill
Vicki and I were married at Ashburn Lutheran Church in Chicago on February 16, 1980. But this ceremony actually was set in motion by a series of events that occurred around 1906. At the turn of the twentieth century, my maternal grandmother Charlotte converted to Lutheranism and became engaged to Hugo Dahlke. Their marriage produced twins- my uncle Elmer and my mother Elinor- who attended Emmaus Lutheran School in Milwaukee. As we fast-forward to 1977, Vicki had moved to Chicago to accept the organist position at Chicago Lawn United Methodist Church. Looking for a Lutheran church home, she went to Ashburn on the recommendation of a college classmate. Invited to coffee hour, she sat at the same table with my mother and discovered they had Emmaus in common. Vicki came over for dinner the next Sunday. The rest is history.
Pastor Timothy Keller states that everything that happens is part of God’s plan, even little things and bad things. Regardless of how much we’re able to discern, we must trust that God that everything hangs together. Yet the jolt of our vocation loss conflicts our emotions and divides our hearts because, as pastor and author Mark Batterson observes: “. . . we reduce God to the size of our biggest problems.” We seek solace in earthly substitutes we can wrap our hearts around.
Our divided hearts will be united as we not only think about, but love the truth’s of God’s Word, allowing our worship to flow naturally from our love of God. Through the Holy Spirit, we grow to trust God as God and as there. Pastor Keller explains:
“. . . it means to see with the eyes of your heart how Jesus plunged into the fire for you when he went to the cross. . . . If you remember with grateful amazement that Jesus was thrown into the ultimate furnace for you, you can begin to sense him in your smaller furnaces with you.”