We are a people once asleep, now waking to a new world, where our forms of life have done irreparable harm to our earth and helped to unleash a deadly pathogen on ourselves. We must ask, how will these bones live?
Sin exists in the denial of love and compassion. Where there is justice, there God’s work is seen. It is the absence of love and denial of fellowship with one another that defines sin. Being Christ’s disciple is building a just society by loving one another and creating a safe space for everyone to live in. The Church should be a welcoming place where everyone feels liberated and not judged based on differences or otherness
Sometimes, there are no cosmic answers to the cosmic questions around us. Jesus demonstrates that the answer to that question, ‘who are you?’ can only be lived out in relationality to the divine one moment, one temptation at a time.
Retelling of a story/text in the Word of God demonstrates the dynamic nature of the event of the God of the word. The God of the Bible is a God who reappears, reveals, re-presents, reimagines and repeats Godself to the creation in God’s own ways to each time and context.
An occasional characterization of the Book of Haggai is that it is self-interestedly supportive of the ascendant Persian Empire. I elaborate on this description and then problematize it by demonstrating that this pericope reveals the prophet to be subversively mimicking the Achaemenid imperial metanarrative.
To be neutral in this world is similar to being cruel and being, ourselves, the oppressor. Following Jesus signals an end to neutrality.
In the midst of a complicated and troubled world it may seem impossible to make a difference, and yet, the wish of a little Israelite girl says otherwise. The spirit of the young Israelite girl and her larger cadre of enslave servants to Naaman live on today in the resourceful actions and tireless work of so many influential youth in our world, those whose passion and will for change persist.
Can the Spirit provide comfort when confronted by such great sin and suffering? I offer a tentative, hesitant yes. A Spirit committed to justice is a Spirit that will lament injustice.
Luke states with exquisite and unmistakable clarity that God will not hesitate to silence those with power, and give a bullhorn to those without power, even ensuring that—if need be—the creation itself will speak justice into the world.
Psalm 36 reminds us that hope is grounded in God’s very nature, that it rests in the hesed of the LORD. Today, despite the fact that the work we undertake remains unfinished, we can rest in God’s hesed.