Signposts: Daily Devotions

Written by Larry Pray

Sunday, November 16

Here I am, ready to come to you this third time. And I will not be a burden, because I do not want what is yours but you.
—2 Corinthians 12:14

We know Paul's sentiment well.

We hoped the first conversation would do the trick. And so we went to share a concern. But the visit amounted to nothing. Our counsel ran like water off a duck's back. And so we went again.  This time we were especially careful to not be intrusive. We did not want to wear out our welcome. But the behavior we hoped to change had not changed. The impact we hoped to have made no difference.

And so we summed up our courage for one more talk. “Maybe this time,” we said to ourselves. 

It would be easy to become discouraged. But life has a way of asking us to engage not just once or twice, but many times. We connect with each other over time. We search for meaning over time. We look for hope, find that it seems to ebb and flow, but come to understand that over time it is an intrinsic part of our life. 

We live in an era prone to the quick fix, where television is always showing us the end result of one conflict or another, and pays little attention to life as we live it over time. But that is not how things work in the real world. Oftentimes conflicts cannot be neatly resolved.

Yet to live fully, we keep our hearts open and watch how God is working over time. We keep coming back, trying again, knowing that God is with us as we go.  

Gracious God, grant us patience, persistence and a sense of humor, over time. In Jesus' Name. Amen.