Thank you for all your prayers this week. Those big storms the so-called "weather experts" were predicting never happened around here. The severe weather tracked to the west of us, but even that weather wasn't anything too bad. I did hear of some farm trees being blown down and that's about it. Fortunately those Oklahoma storm chasers that traveled to our area didn't have any tornadoes to chase. Right we are praying for dry weather. It has been unseasonably wet this spring. With the wet ground we can't start our ramp construction project here at Salem.
This I have been captivated by Hosea's words from God that say, "I desire mercy not sacrifice…" (NIV translation…the translation we use in worship), but I like how the NRSV translates this verse, "I desire STEADFAST LOVE, not mercy…". I like the NRSV because earlier God is saying to the people that their LOVE is like the morning cloud; like the morning dew that quickly disappears. Connecting these two verses together by using "steadfast love" drives home the point better. We are good at showing love…at times…when it is convenient. But God desires STEADFAST love; a love that is never ending. The Israelites were doing all (or almost all) the "right" things according to the law, but they were not loving their neighbor. They were more focused on their acts of worship than on people. I guess we can still relate to that today…can't we?
Let us pray…
God of mercy you have given your one and only Son so we may live. Help us to show that mercy to others so people may come to know you. And help us to daily learn what this means, "I desire steadfast love, not sacrifice…". Amen.
Praise be to God always and forever!