“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:1-2
Mother’s Day is this coming Sunday and these verses from Romans 12 had been part of my scripture readings last week and the lesson from the Apostle Paul just seemed to be appropriately matched to look at before next weekend. Whether you are a mother or a father or childless, Paul encourages each of us to offer our lives as a living sacrifice to our Triune God. This world gets into the way too often as we are told we are supposed to be happy, supposed to always have it our way and we have a ‘right’ to be given more than we have. I heard the hymn “The day of resurrection” on the radio recently and I found it online today. It was put into a song by Henry T. Smart 1813-1879, and its words tell of what the blessings await at the end of our journey.
“The day of resurrection! Earth, tell it out abroad; the passover of gladness, the passover of God. From death to life eternal, from earth unto the sky, our Christ hath brought us over, with hymns of victory. Our hearts be pure from evil, that we may see aright the Lord in rays eternal of resurrection light; and listening to his accents, may hear, so calm and plain, his own "All hail!" and, hearing, may raise the victor strain. Now let the heavens be joyful! Let earth the song begin! Let the round world keep triumph, and all that is therein! Let all things seen and unseen their notes in gladness blend, for Christ the Lord hath risen, our joy that hath no end. “
The attached photo is of the cook at Mixte Lutheran School in Port-au-Prince. She has been laboring over a pot of rice and beans on this particular morning in a hot kitchen, bringing food to children who have had none this day. Her humble service is God pleasing. No matter what your task will be on this day, healing, cooking, cleaning, plumbing, building, checking computations or teaching young children; may your work be God pleasing and may your life serve Him and not this world.
Dear Heavenly Father, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown. Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Amen.
May God be with you…Jay