This evening prayer's antiphon, taken from the first Psalm of tonight, Psalm 136 (137), cries with a passion that we should all share: If I forget you, Jerusalem, let my right hand wither! Given that Jerusalem is a foreshadow of the kingdom of God, the kingdom of our hope, this sentiment brought to mind with some regret how we often settle for less. Settling for accolades from men, putting our ultimate trust in human reason, settling for purely natural notions of beauty and goodness, lust instead of love, material instead of Heavenly wealth. How ironic when the Lord seeks to give us abundance and fullness. In the evening prayer's reading, St. Paul wrote (Col 3:16), "Christ's message, in all its richness must live in your hearts. Teach and instruct each other with all wisdom." There's too much in Scripture to quote which I don't even know off the top of my head (and any visiting reader might want to put them in the comments). But look at what he's given. The Hebrews wanted Saul, God gave -- not just David, nor Solomon -- but the Son of God. Many people believe in a spiritual resurrection, or a reincarnation. Christ promises a complete resurrection -- body and soul -- and Heaven.
With that offer on the table, how can we settle for less -- without even examining the offer thoroughly?
[Note: the readings above are based on Tuesday of the 4th week, rather than the vespers before the Feast of St. John the Baptist's birthday.]