Monday, September 10, 2012

September 11, 2012

"Make every effort to add to your faith goodness..." II Peter 1:5a

It's that dreaded day again.
We will find ourselves conflicted once more. A big part of us would like to forget that it happened and yet we discover it changed us forever, so that's impossible.
If you haven't already, you will be deluged with the horrifying videos of the planes hitting the towers, the thick black smoke billowing from the gaping holes in the twin towers, the people jumping and then the buildings crumbling.
I don't know about you, but I feel much the same emotions now that I had eleven years ago.
The most enduring images for me will always be those brave firemen and rescue workers running in when panicked people were running out.
When you think of that image you will have a good understanding of what Peter is saying in this verse.
"Make every effort" literally means "bend every energy".
"Bend every energy" toward what? Toward adding goodness to your faith!
What does that mean exactly?
The idea behind "adding" means to support something you believe in, like patrons in ancient Greece would contribute to the actors and producers of the Greek dramas. It is literally putting your money "where your mouth is".
So, Peter is saying that if we have faith we must support it by displaying "goodness".
The word used for "goodness" could be translated "virtue" or "excellence" or "moral courage". So, faith is expressed when we have the "moral courage" to do what God says is right no matter what the situation.
Faith is remembering that God has given us "everything we need for life and godliness" when we are confronted with a moral decision to choose the good God desires or do what is easy.
That is why these brave heroes exemplified goodness during that tragic event. Because they had faith in their training and believed in the goodness of their cause, they made every effort to fulfill their mission.
Today, I will be dwelling on that challenge as I view the videos again and again.