Monday 10 May 2021

Bible Book:

When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream. (v. 1)

Psalm 126 Monday 10 May 2021

Amos 1:1-15  Psalm 126


The Bible reading for today is Amos 1:1-15. The prophet Amos was speaking at a time when the people were living in relative stability but were ignoring God’s laws. They were not upholding God’s justice or exercising care for one another or for their environment. So, the prophet sounds the alarm, announces the warning, and speaks of a God who will call the people to account.

Many individuals and organisations, of faith and of unknown faith, are similarly sounding alarms about the climate crisis. Today is the start of Christian Aid Week and the organisation has climate justice as its theme. It is not a crisis that is in front of us, but one that surrounds us. It is not a case of 'unless we do this' the world will be in crisis. The world already is in crisis. The concerns for the climate are real and it's a situation with which we need to engage. It is part of that command of Christ which we were considering yesterday. Again, there is no opt-out clause, we are commanded to get on with it.

New Zealand hymn writer, Shirley Erena Murray’s words in "God weeps at love withheld" (Singing the Faith 700) are challenging in how, in the manner of the prophets, she articulates God’s displeasure – God weeps, God bleeds, God cries, God waits. Engaging with and responding to the call to justice in all its expressions – and in climate justice especially – is a core characteristic of the people of God – it is not something we do, but is an expression of who we are.

In engaging with climate justice, in changing the way we engage with the planet, in thinking differently about the lifestyle choices we make, we are exercising our discipleship. It is an exercising of discipleship which cannot be separated from all the other ways in which we exercise discipleship. We cannot love our neighbour, reach out to the poor, set free the oppressed or make more disciples of Jesus without having a regard for the planet, which is the arena of our discipleship. It will not happen unless we make it happen. Yet we dare to dream of a changed future and the dream motivates us to spend our waking hours in prophetic engagement. The Psalmist offers words which look towards a time of restoration, a time people dream of and long for, when a faithful God does a great thing and ‘those who go out weeping… shall come home with shouts of joy” (Psalm 126:1 and 6).


To Ponder:

  • Take a look at the Christian Aid prayer sheet for this year and think about how you might incorporate some of the prayers into your daily devotions.
  • Read the words of Shirley Erena Murray’s hymn (Singing the Faith 700). What phrases stand out for you? How do you respond to the ideas about the way human behaviour affects God?
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