We need not wait until the culmination of all things to experience the joy of God’s justice. The end of days is not the only time we will witness a restoration of the rightness of God’s truth and peace. No, in the royal order of God’s design, God’s gifts and promises are available now to those who heed and follow God’s ways.

It began with the “offspring of Jacob” and “offspring of Israel” (ESV), the literal descendants of that father of nations, Abraham. But it extends forth to us, too—“those who fear him” and “those who seek him” (ESV). We are promised that we’ll be seen. That our afflictions will not bypass the sight of our God. That we’ll be heard when we cry. That we’ll be fed and satisfied in body and soul. That God’s face will not be hidden from us.

What wonderful news this is! Our God is one who sees, who hears, who feeds, who cares, and who is even seen by us. All the many needs we have, physical and emotional, are known and tended by the One who gave us the lives we live.

Our hope is not a hope that waits, unfulfilled until the very end. God’s gifts can come to us now. When we fear God, when we put our lives in service of the royal order God has decreed—God above all and all else flowing from there—we receive the gifts and care of God’s presence with us, God’s eye upon us, and God’s provision for us. Blessed be the name of the Lord!

O God, remind me of your presence always, but especially when I most need it. All the gifts you make available to me I open myself to receive. Amen.

Pray the Scriptures Using Audio Lectio
Read Mark 8:31-38

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Lectionary Week
February 22–28, 2021
Scripture Overview

We cannot earn God’s love. Going back to the time of Abraham, God’s blessing has been based on faith. God chose Abraham for a covenant not because Abraham was perfect but because he believed God. The psalmist reminds his audience of their ancient relationship with God and expresses the hope that it will continue through future generations. In Romans, Paul reinforces the centrality of faith. Following the law was not bad, but no one should believe that following the law could earn God’s favor. Some of Jesus’ disciples share with him an experience that mystifies them. Trusting God means surrendering everything in faith.

Questions and Suggestions for Reflection

Read Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16. What is the basis of your relationship with God? How comfortable do you feel in it?
Read Psalm 22:23-31. Where do you find hope in troubling times?
Read Romans 4:13-25. How easily do you live in God’s grace? In what areas do you find yourself “reckoning” your righteousness?
Read Mark 9:2-9. Do you ever find it difficult to believe in things you may not fully understand? What helps you to trust in God?

Respond by posting a prayer.

I join many of those who will pray for you as you seek to discern what you are called to be at this moment. May God grant you the courage to fulfill that calling. May we all open our eyes and see the misery, open our ears and hear the cries of God’s people, and, like God through the Lord Jesus Christ, be incarnate amongst them.” 

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