Today's Lectionary Text
Psalm 139:1-12, 13-14
O Lord, you have searched me and known me.
Where can I go from your spirit?
Did you ever have an experience similar to this: I needed daughter No. 3, Erin, but I was not totally present, so I called for Kristin, the oldest (oops!). Then, I hollered for Alissa, the middle one (oh, no!). Finally, I got to Erin. Or, in today’s version, when I Facetime with my 6-year-old grandson, Owen, I have no trouble calling him by name. He’s the oldest one. But how many times since March have I called our 4-month-old grandson, whose name is Wendell, Owen by mistake? I even know why his name is Wendell and that does not seem to help.
As I read these verses from Psalm 139, I discover that God does not have this problem. God knows each one of us so very well, so intimately. Yes, God really knows me. God put me together, God made me special. God knows my very essence.
In addition, if I want to be a little less known, that is too bad. Try as I might, I cannot get away from God and from the fact that God knows me so very well. God sticks with me. God really cares about me. God created me, all of me, God set me apart, and God is aware of my anxiousness and fears.
If God knows me like this, it will seem that God must know others, whom God also knit together, in the same way. The person who contracted COVID-19 and is on a ventilator is on God’s radar. The frontline doctors, nurses and caregivers who are daily risking their own lives are part of God’s network of care. God understands just how scary the position in which each of these finds him- or herself is. And God is there.
Surely, in the last 8 minutes and 46 seconds of his life, George Floyd was terrified. Our hope might include that in those terror and fear-filled minutes, he knew the presence of God with him. God had known him since God created him. Like me, like each of my daughters, George Floyd was created as something wonderful, special, and unique. And God does not ignore any part of what he has created. God did not, during those 8 minutes and 46 seconds leave George Floyd alone.
Perhaps each of us is named by God, created by God just to convey to a world full of God’s creations, how much God cares, and the nearness with which God holds us. We must each by a channel for that caring to impact the world. Let us each find a way that fits us to be conduit for God’s caring love -- to those who are afflicted by the pandemic, to professionals who are risking everything every day to treat those who are ill, to those folk who are treated as less than a creation of God because they are different. We each have a part of us that can communicate to others of God’s children, just how valuable, unique and cared about they are. Let’s do it!
*Devotion reprinted from 7/14/2020
Prayer for Reflection
For knitting me together and making me who I am, I give you thanks and praise, Holy One. Help me to use who I am to help others find the space and resources to be just who you created them to be. Let us all work together to live faithful lives that bring your kingdom nearer. Amen.
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