On January 16, 1605, Miguel de Cervantes published Don Quixote the Man from La Mancha, considered to be the first modern novel. It’s been several years since I read the novel, but we usually sum up Quixote’s life as one of uselessly tilting at windmills to restore life as he thought it should be. Quixote can have relevance today as we see society if not the whole world going awry and any attempts to turn things in a better direction as so much tilting at windmills.
However, the Old Testament lesson (Isaiah 43:1-7) for last Sunday pulls us back to reality. “But now thus says the Lord, he who created you…he who formed you…do not be afraid, because I have reclaimed you. I have called you by name; you are mine.” We are more than a collection of DNAs born to live out our life in the chaos of an out of control world. God created us in our mother’s womb. God knows us. We belong to him two ways. As our creator and through Jesus he has reclaimed us for himself. With that claim go numerous promises.
Are we awash on a stormed tossed sea? Are we afraid? “I am with you. I am Immanuel.” Are we lost in our life? “I am the Lord your God…your Savior.” Do we feel worthless and useless? “You are precious to me, you are honored, and I love you.” Do we feel scattered and alone in a world which seems to be godless? “I will gather you” from the east, west, north and south. Does our life lack a real purpose? “You are my witnesses…I have chosen you as my servant in order that you know and believe in me and understand that I am the One.”