Thursday: Psalm 13-14; Amos 1.1-8; John 4.46-54

From: James Flaherty

My hope for Lent is to know God as a loving father. The all-mighty Lord who reigns in incalculable majesty—that version of God comes more easily to me. He squares with my misanthropy and my assumption that life on Earth is basically small and sad.

Thinking of God as a loving father is confrontational for my cynicism. My headspace is a swamp of thoughts like these: If God doesn’t answer my prayers, it must mean my prayers are stupid. God probably wants me to be miserable. The complete and systematic frustration of my hopes is probably the only way for God to turn my life into the kind of human wreckage against which His designs will look comparatively excellent. Thanks, God.

Lord, silence this mess. Silence me. Tell me what you have for me instead.

The story of Jesus’s healing the son of the royal official in John 4 is maddeningly simple. It’s the simple Jesus I think I need to spend time with. So I’m reading the Bible—quietly, without an agenda, and with a listening ear. I hope He'll speak.

I live in Boston with my wife and daughter.