Friday, 14 December 2012

Friday - Remembering and Giving Thanks to God

Prayer:  O God,  the giver of all good gifts,  we thank You for all the blessings which we have.  Give us always contented minds, cheerful hearts, and ready wills so that we may spend and be spent in the service of others, after the example of Jesus who gave his life a ransom for many,  Jesus Christ our Lord.   Amen.
(Prayers for All Occasions.   Forward Movement Press.  1964).

Read St.Luke  6: 1 – 11

The Sabbath.     During the Exodus,  keeping the Sabbath was one of the covenantal laws that God stated for Israelites.   The idea of the Sabbath was to have one day in the week where the people would remember and give thanks to God.    
By the time of Jesus, there were too many laws  around the law.  One could not rub two pieces of corn or grain together to eat on the Sabbath.  One could not travel any further than six furlongs.  One could not lift anything heavier than the weight of two figs.
What?  The laws of Sabbath were becoming a burden to the people instead of a day of delight in God. 

Re-read this scripture for a minute.   Now re-read verse 2.  Some Pharisees said, “Why are you doing that, breaking a Sabbath rule?”    Okay,  if the disciples are walking through a field of ripe grain,  where are the Pharisees?    If the Pharisees can see what the disciples are doing,  wouldn’t you suppose they are near the disciples?  And are the Pharisees breaking the laws themselves?  Yup.    We frequently put the Pharisees in a bad light and say that their beliefs were all wrong.  But here we have a group of Pharisees that see something God-like in Jesus and they want to learn more about Jesus.    They question Jesus because Jesus is doing something new and not following the laws that the Pharisees have strived to follow all the days of their lives so that they can be close to God.

What kind of action suits the Sabbath best?  Do we still need to keep the Sabbath today?  Yes indeed.   We need one day a week in order to worship and glorify and thank God.   We need one day a week so that we can step back from our lives and instead of focussing upon ourselves or our paperwork,  we focus upon God.

Today,  how will you focus upon God?

Prayer:  Bless the Lord O  my soul and all that is within me,  bless His Holy Name.  Bless the Lord,  O my soul,  that I may not forget to rest and abide with You.   Bless the Lord, O my soul, and grant me peace that passes all understanding.  Christ is coming soon.  Amen.

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