For seven verses in our First Reading assigned for Sunday, June 20th, God goes on and on, listing all the ways the people have been rebellious. The list is long, diverse, and not pretty. Read it carefully; can you find any of your own actions in the list?
Thinking you know the way better than anyone else (even God)?
A holier-than-thou attitude?
Yet God’s hand (verse 2) has been stretched out continually, which is a poetic way of demonstrating a posture of blessing, or a motion of gathering.
Last night a particularly destructive storm found its way through our area, and in our community, for the first time I can remember, the weather siren sounded for a full two hours. We spent the evening in the basement, and after the last warning expired, we tucked the children in safely–much later than usual. Not everyone was so fortunate. But on the news reports this morning, I heard one emergency worker say, “I drive around and I see broken things. I do not see broken people. That’s all that matters.”
The final two verses in our reading is where the list of sins stops, and the actions of God are enumerated. God will not destroy, but will keep peoples together, as a wine is found in the cluster (verse 8). Whether it be external and unforseen weather events, or our own self-destruction, God’s will is preservation, blessing, a settled soul.
God of mercy, are you still ready to be found by those who did not seek you? Amen.