When I was a hospital chaplain, I often visited people who were suffering through illness or loss. Sometimes, patients would say, “Well, there must be a reason for this.” I usually thought to myself, “Well, things happen, and we try to make sense of it.” I didn’t actually say those...
Compassionate God, in times of suffering, help me to remember your promise of redemption. Amen.
As God promised land and descendants to Abraham, in the reading from Genesis God confirms these same promises to Abraham’s grandson Jacob. The psalmist meditates on and takes comfort in the fact that God knows everything and is everywhere. He asks God to search his heart and reveal if there are sins away from which he needs to turn. The Romans passage continues Paul’s reflection on the life in the Spirit. Because we are children of God, we cry out with confidence that God will hear and answer. Jesus tells a parable in Matthew concerning the final judgment. He says that the wicked will be taken first, then the righteous will be gathered together.
Read Genesis 28:10-19a. When has God quietly been at work in your life? How do these experiences help you recognize God’s presence with you in ordinary days?Read Psalm 139:1-12, 23-24. God already knows us completely. What is holding you back from inviting God to search your heart?Read Romans 8:12-25. Consider the ways you already resemble God. In what ways do you wish to be transformed to resemble God more fully?Read Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43. Reflect on a time when you were frustrated by God’s inaction in the face of injustice. In hindsight, how was God at work?
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