Today is the 34th day that we have been counting the omer.
As I have been continuing to read in Deuteronomy, I have been impressed with two statements that are repeated several times. One of them is, “Remember that you were a slave in Egypt….” When those words are spoken, they refer to how the people were to treat those who were foreigners, orphans, or widows.
The other has to do with the positive and negative consequences of actions – “if … then.” Moses laid it all out for them. He was very clear about things that were right and things that were wrong in the sight of God. He adamantly declared to them that if they would do what was right according to God’s character, then they would be blessed by God. However, if they chose to do what was wrong according to God’s character, then they would be cursed by God. And even with all his effort to ensure that they would choose the right, he told them that he knew that they would choose wrongly down the road.
I think that both of the statements, “remember that you were a slave in Egypt”, and “if … then”, are meant to spur us to think about where we have been, who we are, and who we want to be. Those statements remind us that we were once away from God and were slaves. We made choices that took us deeper into slavery. We were driven to repeat the same stifling, derogatory behaviors, and attitudes.
We hated where we were, and we knew that there had to be a better way. As a result of that central truth, God’s prevenient grace in our lives, we began to seek the way out. God, “who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in our sins – it is by grace you have been saved.” (Ephesians 2:4-5) Now, we are heirs of God and joint heirs with Jesus the Messiah. We are to remember where we have been and give mercy and grace to those who have not yet found the Truth or are weak. Each day we are to realize that God is still forming Himself within us. We have choices to make that will either polish us to reflect Him more clearly or cloud us over so that His character is not quite recognizable. The choice is ours.
It is my prayer that we will choose to remember where we have been, who we are, and who we want to be and choose God’s blessings each day as we move toward Pentecost.
May 15, 2020