Almost everyone is familiar with the opening phrase of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony. Da da da dum; da da da dum. The motif is now ubiquitous. Some riffs, rhythms, and even lyrics ensconce themselves in the mind so tenaciously it is hard to imagine a world without them: as if they existed all along only waiting for someone to discover them.

At one point in his letter to the believers in Ephesus, Paul says it makes sense that God would save us by his own effort, since the purpose and work we are able to do after we have been delivered is created by him long before we are delivered—certainly before we do it.

There is less mystery in that statement than in the fact that we find it mysterious. In every creation or invention we simply dig until we discover the water God has always had waiting for us to find. Striking that water, we put aside the pen, guitar, brush, keyboard, hammer, needle, tongs, or pestle, because we know we have arrived at the good he created.

May we pray, plan, work, and serve knowing God has already prepared what he invites us to accomplish this week.