BETTER LATE THEN NEVER

Please read the following scriptures.

• Joel 2:23-32 and Psalm 65 •

• Jeremiah 14:7-10, 19-22 and Psalm 84:1-7 •

• 2 Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18 •

• Luke 18:9-14

When was the last time you thought about this line?

BETTER LATE THEN NEVER.

This week I missed my own deadline. How many deadlines have I given myself that I have not met? How many deadlines have I missed given by others? This text and message was due last week. Circumstances, will power, discipline, random thoughts, expectations, work, unclear thinking, illness, tiredness, aging, forgetfulness, what else could there be that interrupts the task? I decided to go back and do this message. I am glad that I did. The message of this passage was overwhelming. It brought me back to what my calling is all about. We are TO receive the grace of God. We are to RECEIVE the Grace of God. We are to receive the GRACE of God. Perhaps at any given time it is a matter of where the emphasis lies, of what words speak to us. Joel (Joel 2:23-32) tells us, “be glad and rejoice in the Lord your God.” The text tells us the grace of God is a destination. It is something to arrive at. Once we get there it provides it’s own blessings. The Psalmist (Psalm 65) tells us “By awesome deeds you answer us with deliverance, O God of our salvation; you are the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas.” The image for us is not how late we are but rather how God reads our intentions and responds to us. It is how God reads our heart and then creates an incentive for us to not give up. Even though Jeremiah reminds us (Jeremiah 14:7-10, 19-22) that our actions speak against us, it is the desire of God we turn back to a loving and intentional relationship with God. Paul the Apostle knew failure from many directions but understood it will be the Lord who ultimately brings salvation. Then Doctor Luke quotes a story from Jesus concluding the ultimate deliverance from our failures is found in recognizing acceptance of the desire of God to keep us, to turn us around and to save us.

A moment of music:

Come Ye Thankful People Come https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t3n7IUCdqAM

National Youth Choir of Scotland https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcL9S5a3weU

Lord of the Dance https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YV15StV6TK0

A Prayer:

Lord God, you invite us to dance, to celebrate. Please, as we walk each day clear the temptations from us that we may dance in your world, that we may celebrate your grace with those around us. Amen.

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