Unless the LORD builds the house, *
their labor is in vain who build it.
2 Unless the LORD watches over the city, *
in vain the watchman keeps his vigil.
3 It is in vain that you rise so early and go to bed so late; *
vain, too, to eat the bread of toil,
for he gives to his beloved sleep.
Psalm 127: 1-3
This week I am grateful for the surprising ways that God takes care of us physically, emotionally and spiritually. It is a common theme in scripture to remind the people of God that their efforts are not what upholds the world and all living things, but God’s creating, sustaining and redeeming power. Our work as individuals, families and communities is all in response to God’s gift of our lives. It is this acknowledgement that everything belongs to God, including us, that makes care for others, service in the world and stewardship of resources and creation possible. Realizing that nothing we own or gain is ours opens us to a life that is less self-interested and more oriented toward service of others.
This week we observe Veterans’ Day. I am grateful for the selfless spirit in which many have served in the military, diplomacy, and in public service. They are the watchers of our cities and the builders of our civic life. When they serve in the spirit of God, amazing work happens.
It takes knowing that your life is not ultimately yours to offer it for the protection of others and in service to others. My prayer for those who do so is that God will be in their efforts and that their efforts may promote peace. My prayer for all of us is that we look for God in our homes, our cities and our communities, and that we are given the rest of knowing all of them belong to God.
In the peace of Christ,
The Rev. Veronika Travis