Luther Seminary God Pause
Sunday, 11/30/2014 Reading: Exodus 19:1-6
A couple says "I do" and pledges to journey together in sickness and health. A judge signs the adoption papers and a new family is formed. A firm handshake seals the deal that launches a budding business venture. No matter the means, entering into a relationship implies commitment, trust and hope for a shared future.
The Israelites are three months into their wilderness journey. God has been present along the way, leading them by pillars of cloud and fire, sending manna and quail for nourishment. Now, God instructs Moses to explicitly tell the people: "You shall be my treasured possession ... a holy nation." God clearly desires a more personal connection, complete with commitment, trust and hope for a shared future. God's words are an invitation into a deeper relationship. This season, God invites us to come closer--closer to the Word, closer to God's heart. "O Lord, how shall we meet you?" asks the Advent hymn. We might start by accepting the invitation.
O God, you call us into a relationship with you that will transform us from the inside out. Prepare our hearts to receive you, so that we might be surprised, comforted and changed by your presence. Amen.>
Shelley Cunningham Pastor, Zumbro Lutheran Church Rochester, Minn. Master of Divinity, 1998
Exodus 19:1-6 (NRSV)
1 On the third new moon after the Israelites had gone out of the land of Egypt, on that very day, they came into the wilderness of Sinai. 2 They had journeyed from Rephidim, entered the wilderness of Sinai, and camped in the wilderness; Israel camped there in front of the mountain. 3 Then Moses went up to God; the Lord called to him from the mountain, saying, "Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the Israelites: 4 You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles' wings and brought you to myself. 5 Now therefore, if you obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession out of all the peoples. Indeed, the whole earth is mine, 6 but you shall be for me a priestly kingdom and a holy nation. These are the words that you shall speak to the Israelites."
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