The prophet Isaiah tells a worried people that God is about to do a new and wonderful thing in their lives (Isaiah 43:19) Will the people be able to perceive it?
As the saying goes, hindsight is 20/20. Looking at the past, we may be able to see how God’s hand was at work at particular times. Is there a way we can see God at work now? Is it worth trying to look?
I think it is worth looking for God’s hand in the present time, because even the process of searching will open our eyes and ears and hearts and minds to new possibilities. I feel like if I’ve plugged my ears, then I don’t have much right to complain about God seeming silent. If I open my ears I just might hear something!
But even if I’m paying attention, how do I know what God is up to? How should I focus my attention?
One way to look for God at work is to look for the broken-down or overlooked people in this world. One of our other readings for Sunday will be John 12:1-8, in which Jesus’ friend Mary anoints him with expensive perfume. Mary is not broken-down in a financial sense — after all, she bought the perfume — but she is brokenhearted. Not to mention she is female and therefore, at that time, regarded as less important. Yet Jesus points her out as someone who pays attention in a spiritual sense.
How can we pay good attention so that we will perceive God’s good work in our midst?