Saturday, February 20, 2016

Stretch Out Your Hand

One sabbath Jesus was going through the grainfields; and as they made their way his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. The Pharisees said to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the sabbath?” And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he and his companions were hungry and in need of food? He entered the house of God, when Abiathar was high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and he gave some to his companions.” Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the sabbath; so the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”
Again he entered the synagogue, and a man was there who had a withered hand. They watched him to see whether he would cure him on the sabbath, so that they might accuse him. And he said to the man who had the withered hand, “Come forward.” Then he said to them, “Is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the sabbath, to save life or to kill?” But they were silent. He looked around at them with anger; he was grieved at their hardness of heart and said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and immediately conspired with the Herodians against him, how to destroy him. Mark 2:23 – 3:6 

There are so many rules we live our lives by. Not only the state and federal rules that make us a country. We follow rules that our  parents gave us, our cultures gave us, what we are told men and women should do. We often judge ourselves by others' rules and do not hear the voice of acceptance and love that lives beyond human rules. We count calories, exercise to be perfected and healthier, and that beat of conforming can suffocate the God given beauty that is with in each of us.

The disciples and Jesus were hungry so that ate. A man asked to be healed and Jesus was ready to heal. Eating and healing brought judgement from those who ruled the temple. The culture defined this behavior as inappropriate. But God's love is never inappropriate. God's love asks to feed the hungry, heal the broken, welcome the alien and find shelter for the homeless. God's love should be our motivation every day. Sometimes we need to be rule breakers so that God's love might be planted in the darkest places.

Today I ask God to help me spread God's love. May we be fearless in our offering of God's love for that love is abundant and needed. May we be bearers of the Creator's love to a creation which finds itself bound and barred from the fullness of life.

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