‘Tis the season to feel rushed and stressed and skip the things that matter most in favor of the things that ‘must get done’. It’s December with its host of wonderful extras that need to be slipped into our schedules. I haven’t made my ToDo list yet though a bright white sheet of paper sits at my side, clipped to a clipboard and ready for service.
I’m focusing on the bits before all that, taking tiny slow stitches to bind a baby quilt that will be mailed with no thought of Christmas, just because a new granddaughter has been born…And while I stitched this bright winter’s morning I let someone else do my Bible reading for me. [Have you tried ESV.org ? It’s just a click away, on smart phone or computer. Simple to use and a nice change of pace.]
The concept that keeps coming back to me as I listen, whether in Psalms or the prophets, Job or Genesis or the books of the Law, is that God is everything. He’s the Creator, the Provider, the Judge, the Saviour. He’s the one who chooses, ordains, and equips. He’s not interested in our sacrifices and self-sufficiency as much as our dependency and gratitude. He is the hero of our stories. From the beginning He has fashioned us for Himself. He created the man and the woman and made for them a garden from which to find food and meaningful work. And He walked with them there. Everything was perfect as long as they depended on Him for everything and walked with Him day by day. Trouble came when they thought themselves too clever for all that. Maybe they were missing something?! When they leaned on their own understanding everything came tumbling down.
Enter the Son of God, born as a Man, born to serve man’s greatest need. God, serving man, again. How strange. But He has done it, He continues to do it for His own glory. He asks that we take note of His good provision and offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving. And when trouble looms that we call on Him to rescue us. That’s all. He’s the hero. We’re the rescued. Then all we have and are and do will reflect back to His great glory.
“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” – Luk 2:14 ESV
Thoughts gathered from: Genesis 2, Matthew 20, Psalm 50, Job 16, and the ordination of Aaron and sons in Leviticus 8. Some snippets follow…
Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?’ … even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mt. 20:15, 28 ESV
Not for your sacrifices do I rebuke you; your burnt offerings are continually before me. … Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving…and call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me…. The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me; to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God!” Ps.50:8, 14-15, 23 ESV
Even now, behold, my witness is in heaven, and he who testifies for me is on high. My friends scorn me; my eye pours out tears to God, that he would argue the case of a man with God, as a son of man does with his neighbor. Job 16:19-21 ESV
As has been done today, the LORD has commanded to be done to make atonement for you. … And Aaron and his sons did all the things that the LORD commanded by Moses. Lev 8:34, 36 ESV
Whatever God has called you to today, do it gladly depending on Him and thanking Him for being everything you could possibly need to bring Him glory!
And don’t forget to check out www.esv.org ( :