Sunday, July 08, 2012

Destined for adoption and blessing

Readings this week, Sunday 15th July,  include: 2 Samuel 6:1-19*, Amos 7:7-15, Psalm 24, Psalm 85:8-13; Ephesians 1:3-14; Mark 6:14-29 (Proper 15 - Pentecost 7)

This week we think about the ups and downs of life. 
We read about theExecution of John the Baptist,(Mark 6) 
and in the Old Testament (2 Sam 6) about a man 
who dies seemingly while trying to do the right thing.
What we easily realize is that our lives our like this. 
There are things which happen which deeply shake us, 
and "natural causes" to which we are subject which seem deeply unfair.
The innocent die, get sick and suffer.
The funeral service reminds us "In the midst of life we are in death".
Something I am often struck by when taking a funeral 
and ministering to the bereaved.
Life is like that.
Amidst all this 
Paul writes for us an amazingly evocative poem 
about the depth of our relationship with God.
These poems often draw out of us feelings of deep praise and thankfulness
In Christ 
we have redemption through his blood,
the forgiveness of our trespasses,
according to the riches of his grace 
that he lavished on us.
With all wisdom and insight 
he has made known to us the mystery of his will,
according to his good pleasure 
that he set forth in Christ,
as a plan for the fullness of time,
to gather up all things in him, 
things in heaven and things on earth.
though at times of stark difficulty and tragedy

Poetic words can often leave us cold.
We are reminded of the need to dwell richly with God
in the reality of our day to day experiences.

Take a few moments this week 
to locate the points in the last few days
where you have been most deeply affected...positively or negatively
What might this be saying to us?
How might God be asking us to respond, 
and what is God offering to us?
Listen to what God is saying, 
and ask him to show you how you should respond today.
Pray quietly for openness to the Spirit of God and the will to do what God needs you to do.

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