In our biblical tradition and ancient Near Eastern traditions that influenced the biblical texts, any large body of water was symbolic of chaos. “In the beginning . . . the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over...
Loving Creator, recreate us to delight in your beautifully complex world and to trust you will be our anchor when sea billows roll. Amen.
Our first reading is arguably one of the most controversial passages in the Bible. Even among those who believe that God created the world, there is controversy. For example, should the days be understood as literal or symbolic? Much time and trouble have been spent in arguing about these things. A different approach is found in Psalm 8, where the author simply praises God for the majestic work of Creation without needing to work out all the details. Perhaps this approach would lead to more love and peace among the people of God, as Paul hopes for in Second Corinthians. Matthew describes the Ascension, where Jesus tells his followers to baptize in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, an appropriate passage in preparation for Trinity Sunday.
Read Genesis 1:1–2:4a. When has reading the Bible in a new way or with new knowledge changed your experience of the text?Read Psalm 8. How do you feel called to care for the earth God has given us?Read 2 Corinthians 13:11-13. How does your faith community heed Paul’s advice to the Corinthians? How does it fall short?Read Matthew 28:16-20. Recall a time of doubt. How has that experience made your faith stronger?
Respond by posting a prayer.
The RESILIENCE conference in 2021 was so uplifting and nourishing. It was wonderful to be with other Christians around the world at this retreat, who truly care about responding to trauma in a compassionate way by teaching spiritual practices to help with grounding and healing.”
Join us for the next RESILIENCE conference on September 29-30, 2023. Learn more at UpperRoom.org/resilience.