“In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.
Daniel 7:13-14 (NRSV)
The book of Daniel is considered to be apocalyptic writing, or writing about the end times.
Often we hear this referring to the apocalypse or the end of the world, which I admit is a bit grim and scary to think about. But I do think it is important to honor the fact that some things do end and that is OK.
For instance, as glad as I was to go through middle school, I was glad the awkward teen years came to an end. When graduating high school and then college, it was hard to leave friends but it is also exciting to enter into a new phase. A new phase where there will be new possibilities and opportunities.
There are also times when certain things need to end like hatred or injustice. Sometimes there needs to make new traditions and practices to make sure people are cared for equality. But like Daniel writes, there are other things which should never pass away. God’s kin-don of love and grace will and should never pass away, they will last forever.
And so today what things do you want to keep on? Maybe it is continuing to have gratitude each day. Maybe it is showing compassion to a random stranger. Maybe what is needed is to laugh and have a spirit of joy. These are the things which will remain not the things which are harmful. And each day grace and love might look different but if it’s done with intention and kindness.
May we bring about the good and leave behind the bad.
-- Maddi Baugous, pastoral intern
Omaha First UMC
Prayer for Reflection
Loving God, help us to embrace the end of certain things and to remember what is eternal: love, compassion, and grace. Amen.