Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

Jude 24, 25

 

There is a lot of debris littering our streets these days. This hard part of our reality has little to do with city budgets or road maintenance practices. Instead, it is directly related to the fact that we live in a world that is filled with conflict, disillusionment, and even despair. As we walk about we are probably going to encounter the damage that results from all of this strife. The sharp and hard-edged objects in the paths of the day are made up of broken hearts, shattered dreams, defeated plans, and deceived spirits. This world has become a workplace where hard hats and safety shoes are required.

 

So, what does singing praises to God have to do with safely getting from home to my destination and back again? The first thing that comes to mind is the fact that safety is relative and some aspects of it are overrated. If we are talking in terms of cuts, bruises, and even some broken bones, these are inevitable. Our bodies and our hearts will suffer as we go through life. There are too many obstacles and too much opposition for that not to happen. The safety that Jude is describing is different. He is focused on our spirits and on the deep-seated aspects of our hearts where our true beliefs and identity dwell.

 

God does protect our souls. He guards His children with a ferocity that dwarfs that of the most protective of animal or human parent. He is the one who guards and cares for us with no hidden agenda, concealed motive, or additional payment required. Jude is saying that we can enter into the peace and the joy of God’s loving presence by taking our eyes off of ourselves and by looking up toward God. As we do this we stop focusing on the damage that life has caused and we tune our ears to hearing God’s voice. As we look upon the Lord’s glory, see His extraordinary love and grace, recognize God’s position as Creator, and submit to the absolute authority of Jesus Christ; the truth of God’s Word becomes the loud voice of reason that guides each step that we need to take today.