Sunday, January 23, 2022

Living Power

"Ezra read out of the book from daybreak till midday." Nehemiah 8:3

Daybreak till midday? I can imagine what grumbling there will be if a priest or preacher reads from the Bible from daybreak till midday! Just yesterday during the homily of Father Nocomora in the mass at Our Lady of Fatima, he said that the Gospel reading from Mark 3:20-21 was a favorite because it had only 3 lines! 

After the walls and gates of Jerusalem were rebuilt, Jewish exiles returned to the city and the people had settled in their towns. One day in 445 B.C., all the people assembled together at the square inside the Water Gate. Then Ezra the priest brought out the scroll of the law and read aloud to the men, women and children gathered there. The people paid close attention, and then after Ezra read from early morning till noon, they lifted their hands and worshipped the Lord. After that, it was the turn of the Levites, the other priests, to explain what was read so the people would understand. 

The people started weeping for they realized their sin before God, but Nehemiah and the Levites instructed them, "Don't weep on such a day as this! This is a sacred day. Don't be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength! Go and celebrate!" 

The Word of God, as it says in Hebrews 4:12, is full of living power. It is sharper than the sharpest knife. It can cut deep into our innermost thoughts, and exposes us for who we really are. If we spend time reading it and deliberately trying to understand it as the people in the square did, we will realize how poor and wretched we are before our God. But God does not want us to remain in our wretched state. He wants to pick us up from the mud, and give us new life in Him. That is truly something to rejoice about! Isn’t it amazing that He did not want to remain a distant, uninvolved Father, but He wanted us to get to know Him. The Bible is a love story from beginning to end. 

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I am so glad you dropped by! You are a blessing!
:^) Patsy