Lifting the Veil offers you a unique opportunity to gain insight into the ways in which God weaves together Scripture, people and prayer to reveal how he is at work drawing you into deeper fellowship with him. The world in which we live today is beset on many fronts with complex issues and concerns that seem impervious to any real lasting solution. We long for the day when permanent peace shall be the end for which we strive and reconciliation the means through which such a noble goal is attained. But underlying such a lofty vision for humankind are issues that are more personal to each of us and that confront us daily. One such issue that has, in many ways, gone largely unnoticed and affects so many is our contagious individualism. New strides in technology, the social media, and the Internet have left us for the most part with a seat in front of a computer screen instead of the personal contact we used to enjoy. This is not to say that modern technology does not have its benefits, only that there is still lasting value in the people God puts into our paths from day to day. That is what this devotional is about and what sets it apart from conventional devotional books.
The writings of this book are intended to give you reflective thoughts to consider in order that your daily life and the experiences you encounter may themselves become exercises in devotion. But it takes the additional step of asking you to consider the people whom you may encounter during the week who might “lift the veil” of understanding for that week’s devotional thought. You are also asked to journal these weekly interactions and at the close of the year to look back over the many readings and entries in order to gain an appreciation of the many people God has put into your life over the course of the year.
A careful reading of any passage of Scripture and an accompanying devotional thought always give rise to questions that surface in your heart and mind based on where you are at a particular time in your faith journey. Questions challenge us to consider and rethink our personal lives in light of how we are walking with Christ in some aspects of life and straying from him in others. God is seeking to draw us closer through the circumstances that surround us, the challenges that confront us and the people who meet us in our daily lives. For this reason, the Question of the Week for Daily Reflection has been left open intentionally for the purpose of allowing you to formulate your own question as it rises up from the Scriptural text and finds its place in your mind. The question then becomes a seeking point throughout the week for ways in which God’s truth from the weekly reading becomes a living reality in your life. The interactions with other people during the week help to form and shape these truths and to enable you to recognize that life in community with other believers is such a vital aspect of the Christian life. The Prayer then becomes the heart’s way of assimilating the Scripture, the reading and the question into your being as a way of listening for the Spirit to reveal who you are and that the One to whom you belong does not want to be a stranger in your path but a Companion for the journey.
And they asked her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” As soon as she expressed the reason for her grief she heard another voice near her asking the same question. Only this time, this person asked a second question, “Whom are you looking for?” Then with the mention of one word everything changed for Mary. The darkness of her spirit turned into the light of joy when she heard her name called – “Mary.” The One who spoke to her was Jesus. The story had not ended for Mary and the disciples. The resurrection of Jesus from the dead is the pivotal turning point in the history of humankind. The two questions asked of Mary that morning are still being asked of us today –asked in the midst and the context of a story that has not ended, and asked by the One who know us by name. The story of Easter is not a living quest for the One in whom we place our hope. It is, instead, the story of the one who is looking for each of us – the hope that seeks us. The Easter promise is the assurance that the story of our own life has not ended because no matter how deep the despair, how hopeless the plight, how painful the sorrow, in Christ, all can be transformed into the joy of the new life we have in him and the salvation he makes possible for those who believe.