Lent: 1st Sunday

You, God, are my God,
earnestly I seek you;
I thirst for you,
my whole being longs for you,
in a dry and parched land
where there is no water. (Psalm 63:1)

Observe the commands of the LORD your God, walking in obedience to him and revering him. For the LORD your God is bringing you into a good land...When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the LORD your God for the good land he has given you. (Deut. 8:6-7a, 10)

For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. (1 Cor. 1:25)

And people do not pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins. (Mark 2:22)

Since Ash Wednesday I have been posting portions of the Daily Readings from Year One of the Daily Office Lectionary in the Book of Common Prayer. My Lenten discipline is to read and meditate on the Daily Readings for all 46 days of the Lenten season (40 days of Lent + 6 Sundays). In order to keep myself to the task I decided to select a verse or two from each of the daily readings (Psalms, OT, NT, and Gospel) and arrange them in a way that captures the theme for the day (at least as far as I see it). I have not taken the time to offer reflections each day, but I thought that doing so on the Sundays would be a good part of the process.

As with much of the Lenten readings, the Scriptures this past week focus on two things: 1) self-awareness of sinfulness, and 2) God's mercy/grace/provision. Today's readings offer yet another theme to consider. The readings from 1 Cor. and Mark call to our attention the newness of God's graceful actions. What God has done and is doing cannot be contained or understood in the rationale of this world. It goes against everything that we know. It is appears foolish and weak, and yet it is stronger and wiser than what can be poured into the wineskins we are used to carrying things in. I worry when I and/or the Christian culture in general (especially among Americans, and even more especially among American Evangelicals) grow so accustom to a lifestyle that takes for granted God's strength, wisdom and newness that I fail to see how completely radical God's merciful provision is.

God, remind me anew each day of your foolish wisdom, your weak strength, your new wine. Quench my thirst, when I am in a dry land with no water. And when I am filled, let me praise you for bringing me into the good land you have given me.

1 comment:

Tamara said...

Chris, I wanted to thank you for posting these verses each day, along with your Sunday reflections. The four verses you post come together powerfully and beautifully. I look forward to your upcoming posts.