In Exodus, God parted the waters of the Red Sea to provide a way for God’s people to cross over safely. According to the writer of Psalm 114, Judah became God’s “sanctuary” when they left behind their Egyptian oppressors. God wants us to be God’s sanctuary also, a place where...
Dance, beloved earth, in the presence of your Creator. We long for you, O God, to come and guide our lives—reconciling families, neighbors, churches, and nations. You want every person, animal, and plant in your kingdom to radiate and reflect your goodness and love for all creation. God of love, part the waters of our resistance to your will. Protect our vulnerability when we are weak. Teach us to join hands with all who are different so that we may become one family. Inspire us to do a circle dance, where none is excluded and all are welcome. Let the drums of heaven begin to thunder and the birds begin to sing as your family sways rhythmically to the music of unconditional acceptance. Lord, you are not aloof. The winds and waves obey you! May we fling open our hearts to receive your loving-kindness and mercy. Amen.
Again this week, Exodus tells a story about Moses that is retold in the psalm. The angel of the Lord protects the Israelites and allows them to cross the sea on dry ground, but their enemies are swept away. The psalmist recalls this glorious event. The forces of nature tremble and bow before the presence of God, and the people are delivered. Paul recognizes that there are matters of personal preference or conscience that are not hard and fast rules. Some will feel freedom in areas that others do not, and we are not to judge each other for these differences. Jesus tells a parable in Matthew that highlights the danger of hypocrisy. We who have been forgiven so generously by God have no right to judge others for minor offenses.
Read Exodus 14:19-31. When has the path of faith seemed risky? How have you trusted God and others’ wisdom along the way?
Read Psalm 114. How do you see God’s hand at work in creation? Spend some time in nature. What is God saying?
Read Romans 14:1-12. When have you recognized something as more important than your being right? How has that recognition shaped your faith?
Read Matthew 18:21-35. How do you recognize your own wounds—or those you have inflicted on others—in this parable? How might this parable help you to repair these wounds or the relationships attached to the wounds?
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