NOTE: I am on a “retirement/anniversary” trip and will be out until late September. In the meantime, I’m sharing recycled DayBreaks for 2010. Thanks for your understanding!
From the DayBreaks archive, September 2010:
Henri Nouwen told a parable about an old man who used to meditate each day be the Ganges River in India.
One morning he saw a scorpion floating on the water. When the scorpion drifted near the old man he reached to rescue it but was stung by the scorpion. A bit later he tried again and was stung again, the bite swelling his hand painfully and giving him much pain. Another man passing by saw what was happening and yelled at the mediator, “Hey, stupid old man, what’s wrong with you? Only a fool would risk his life for sake of an ugly, evil creature. Don’t you know you could kill yourself trying to save that ungrateful scorpion?”
The old man calmly replied, “My friend, just because it is in the scorpion’s nature to sting, does not change my nature to save.”
This is, of course, a parable not so much about the nature of the scorpion, but the nature of the old man who was trying to save it. And it is an apt reflection of our nature versus God’s nature. To be quite honest, there isn’t a whole lot in our fleshly nature to commend us to anyone, let alone to God. It is because of the awfulness of our fleshly nature that many despair of ever being recipients of God’s love and grace. When we are focused on our own nature, we have plenty of good reason for despair. Our focus, however, should not be on our nature nearly as much as God’s. It is in God’s nature to save – because it is in God’s nature to love. God seeks the lost, heals the wounded, forgives the offender, and gives hope to those who are in despair, even though we have wounded Him again and again.
It is what God does.
PRAYER: We love You, Lord, because You first loved us. Help us to trust in Your goodness and loving nature! In Jesus’ name, Amen. Copyright 2020 by Galen C. Dalrymple. ><}}}”>