It is said that in one of Matrin Luther’s Table Talks he was asked what he would do if he knew what day the world would end, he responded, “I would plant an apple tree!”
We begin this Advent season with a foreboding sense in our country, rife with schism and an uncertainty of what the future will bring. Luther, like many throughout the years, longed for the peace that the second coming of Christ would bring. His comments on social unrest and ongoing wars could describe the conditions in our 21st century.
Geon-yong Lee was born in North Korea in 1947 and his family settled in South Korea at the end the conflict in 1953. He has been troubled with the division of his country ever sense and in 1988 wrote a moving hymn (#247 ELW, Augsburg) that could be the theme song for this time, Come Now, O Prince of Peace. The lyrics repeat a theme, make us one body…reconcile your people…reconcile all nations.
Our ache for Christ’s presence could easily turn to despair as we are impatient people, however the promise of the Gospel must be lifted up, “I will be with you until the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20 From that promise we can cling to the hope of what we cannot see and follow Jesus into the future.
Let us Pray:
Gracious God, You made promises to your people throughout time; Noah, Abraham, Moses, the Prophets, and the Apostles, heard your voice and knew they could trust your Word, your Word is truth. So now we listen for assurance and comfort. Help us remain hopeful and bring us your peace. Come now and make all people one in you. Amen.
+ Rev. Rodger Prois
Bishop, Western Iowa Synod