Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Isaiah speaks to God’s work as a gardener, growing righteousness and praise (Isaiah 61:11). I wonder how many in our world would benefit from the shining light of God’s righteousness living on earth? The Scripture is clear that it has a ripple effect. Being reconciled to God has results for our neighbors as well. When we find our peace with God we no longer have to strive with those around us. When we know we are secure we are much less likely to react in fear of those who would threaten us. When we know that the Lord will provide, we are much more likely to give to the poor and share with others. I think this explains the fact that Christians have historically been at the forefront of charitable work.
Why do we see so little growth in God’s garden of righteousness and praise? As the good gardener, the Lord prepares the soil of this world. He cultivates our hearts and minds. He stirs up our interests. He clears the rocks out of his garden, making everything right. What is our response? We want to see the garden, so we trample the soil, track rocks into it, and generally mess up the gardener’s work. God plants people in community. We disrupt that planting. God causes us to begin growing in righteousness and praise to Him. We decide it doesn’t look quite the way we think it should so we uproot or choke those plants.
This should not be. Let God be God! May we have the grace to look to the Lord as the master of all. May we always trust that He knows what He is doing. May we patiently allow God’s work, so all can see the glorious crown, that righteousness the Lord places on the head of his people.
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