The reading for today is Jeremiah 25:32
“Thus says the LORD of hosts: Behold, disaster is going forth from nation to nation, and a great tempest is stirring from the farthest parts of the earth!
One of the cool things about working at Living Lord is being able to eavesdrop on the Men’s Morning Study which is usually still going when I arrive on Thursdays. I happen to be writing this devotion on one such Thursday. I overheard bits and pieces of a conversation about a lawyer who questioned Jesus. As the men were leaving and I was setting up for the folding ministry, one of the men engaged me in a conversation about God’s judgment.
We wrestled with words like “punishment” and discussed concepts like “what we deserve.” My non-Lutheran background was pretty legalistic, and I would have been taught that a verse like today’s is about God judging us but these days I read this verse and I see a warning. I think that’s a very different thing.
The man I enjoyed talking to this morning compared God’s love for us to our own love for our children. When I warn my children of something, it’s because I don’t want them to come to harm. In the same way, I don’t think God is looking for ways to punish but rather that He warns us so we can avoid harm.
God, our Loving Father, please give us spiritual eyes to view You, Your works and Your Word in truth and equip us to share our experience of You with our world. Amen.
Paula Barney firstname.lastname@example.org
Prayer Concern: A fresh understanding of God’s love.