"Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other." -Psalm 85:10
Righteousness and peace will kiss each other. Wow! What an image! Especially when you consider that Psalm 85 is the psalm that goes along with Mark 1:1-8, where John the Baptist calls us to repentance and to a baptism for the forgivness of sins. That such inflamatory words of self-reflection would be paired with such a beautiful image as "righteousness and peace kissing each other" is one of the great wonders of the lectionary for me.
That being said, what does such an image do for us in the midst of our Advent adventure? One way to look at it is if we have reflected on our need to come before God and repent, thanks to John's challenging words, then what do we have to look forward to? What else besides righteousness and peace kissing each other satisfies the longing of our hearts? How better to describe our desires for our own broken lives and the brokenness in those whom we care about the most than for the two attributes of righteousness and peace to come together in such an intimate way and restore relationship between God and us and then between us and those whom we love?
As we move even further into this season of reflection before we celebrate the advent of the Nativity, may we all take time to reflect on what it would mean for "righteousness and peace to kiss each other"; in our relationship with God, in our relationship with those closest to us, and in our more casual relationships with so many.
Mysterious and Wonderful God, we praise you for such challenging and seemingly contrasting images as John the Baptist crying out in the wilderness being paired alongside something as moving as righteousness and peace kissing each other. Grant us the wisdom to call upon both images in our lives of faith lived in the midst of a world where righteousness and peace are more often sparring partners than lovers. And as we see opportunities for your peace and righteousness to flourish in our lives with you and others help us grasp onto those moments with courage and strength. Amen.
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