Pentecost 26, Friday, Year C

Inspired by Psalm 98

“The Lord has made known his victory; he has revealed his vindication in the sight of the nations.  He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel.  All the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God.”  Psalm 98:2-3 (NRSV)

Many people try to claim that faith is a personal, private affair.  They don’t talk about their religion; they keep it in its ‘proper’ place on Sundays or at home and don’t allow it to intrude on any other aspects of their lives.  Whether they’re motivated by shame or by an earnest desire to not offend others who might believe differently, they go to great lengths to keep their faith and the God they believe in well hidden from the world.

But God is not content to hide.

At a time when God’s holy covenant was understood to be exclusively with Israel, the psalmist wrote about how God’s victory was on display before the whole world.  The reason for this was not to condemn other nations for their unbelief, but to show them the wonders of God and invite them to share in praising him.  God is the Lord of all people, and all people should have the opportunity to recognize and celebrate his mercy and his justice.

Your faith in Christ is a blessing and a gift, and sharing it with others will not only not cause it to diminish, but will help it to grow.  Your relationship with God might be personal, but there’s nothing private about God’s sovereignty.  His proper place is everywhere, and everyone should be invited to see all that he has done.

Let us pray.  God of victory, you are able to overcome all the elements of the earth that challenge us.  Inspire us to share with the world what you have done for us, that others may recognize your power and trust in your mercy.  Through Christ our Lord, Amen.