Daily Lectionary: Genesis 13:1-18; Mark 5:1-20
And the LORD said unto Abram, after Lot was separated from him, Lift up now your eyes, and look from the place where you are northward, and southward,and eastward, and westward: For all the land which you see, to you will I give it, and to your seed for ever. (Genesis 13:14-15)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Lot and Abram couldn't live near each other. They had too much stuff and their workers didn't get along. Abram let his nephew pick where he would live. Lot chose the plains near the city of
Sodom—a patch of land that looked great to the eyes. Abram got stuck with the wilderness type land of Canaan.
But, it is to Abram that the Lord gives the promise that the land he occupies (which doesn't look so great to his eyes) is the Promised Land that will be for his descendants and into which will be born the Savior. Lot, on the other hand, ends up having to move away from that beautiful area when the Lord comes and destroys Sodom and Gomorrah.
The lesson? Often what looks great to us is not at all what the Lord has in mind. What seems worthless to us is very often what the Lord blesses and uses for His purposes.
Take for example, a guy from Nazareth (a nowhere town to begin with!) who ends up nailed to a cross. To the world, that's all ugliness and uselessness. The eyes of faith, however, see that on the cross is the Seed of Abraham, the Son of God in the flesh, and the Savior of all the world from sin.
Need more examples? Just ask people about Baptism and the Lord's Supper. In most churches, those are just “ordinances” or ceremonies or symbols. But to you, who know God's Word, they are the water and bread and wine which give you a heavenly Father, and the body and blood of Jesus. What the world despises as useless, the Lord Himself uses to save you, forgive you and keep you in the faith.
Don't be fooled! The way the Lord does things is almost always the way that the world doesn't expect or recognize. But God's Word teaches you to take comfort in what He promises. And you should expect nothing less, since you yourself are a descendant of Abraham through faith in Jesus Christ. (Galatians 4:7). In the Name of Jesus. Amen.
There dwells the Lord our king, The Lord our righteousness, Triumphant o'er the world and sin, The Prince of Peace. On Zion's sacred height His kingdom He maintains And glorious with His saints in light Forever reigns. (LSB #798, st.7)
Questions or comments regarding the Reflections may be sent to the Rev. Mark Buetow, Reflections Editor, firstname.lastname@example.org.