In my scripture reading a couple weeks ago, I came across this passage:
“They found grace out in the desert,
these people who survived the killing.
Israel, out looking for a place to rest,
met God out looking for them!”
God told them, “I’ve never quit loving you and never will.
Expect love, love, and more love!
And so now I’ll start over with you and build you up again,
dear virgin Israel.
You’ll resume your singing,
grabbing tambourines and joining the dance.
You’ll go back to your old work of planting vineyards
on the Samaritan hillsides,
And sit back and enjoy the fruit—
oh, how you’ll enjoy those harvests!
The time’s coming when watchmen will call out
from the hilltops of Ephraim:
‘On your feet! Let’s go to Zion,
go to meet our God!’”
Something about this passage grasped me, church. There was something so ALIVE in this promise about grace in the desert, about the boundless love of the father, and about singing and rejoicing over the harvests. I know this was a promise God made to the nation of Israel thousands of years ago... but I also know that the same heart of the same father makes the same promise to us today.
So I urge you, dear ones, to grasp this promise for yourselves. To ask God for grace in the desert places of your lives. To believe that as you are out looking for a place to rest, you will meet God out looking for YOU. To embrace the truth that you are Beloved. And to allow the strength and provision of our mighty God to build up the broken places within you, within us.
Let's gather together tomorrow, and resume our singing. Let's continue the good work of planting vineyards. Let's celebrate the harvest that has already flourished, and all that is yet to come.
On your feet, church! Let's go to meet our God.
I love you so.
Grace in the Desert