Thursday, July 21, 2011

Duties toward God

Words from Sirach rang out this morning. As I walked into the family room my husband was reading the scriptures aloud. The following verses come from chapter 2: 1-11 entitled "Duties toward God."

"My child*, when you come to serve the Lord,
prepare yourself for trials.
Be sincere of heart and steadfast,
undisturbed in time of adversity.

Cling to him, forsake him not;
thus will your future be great.
Accept whatever befalls you,
in crushing misfortune be patient;
For in fire gold is tested,
and worthy men in the crucible of humiliation.
Trust God and he will help you;
make straight your ways and hope in him.

You who fear the Lord, wait for his mercy,
turn not away lest you fall.
You who fear the Lord, trust him,
and your reward will not be lost.
You who fear the Lord, hope for good things,
for lasting joy and mercy.

Study the generations long past
and understand;
Has anyone persevered in his fear
and been forsaken?
Has anyone called upon him and been rebuffed?

Compassionate and merciful is the Lord;
he forgives sins, he saves in time of trouble."

Duty is defined in Webster's dictionary as conduct due to superiors and as a moral obligation. Conduct is not only external actions, but also an interior attitude. Notice the verbs--prepare, be sincere, undisturbed, cling, accept, trust, make straight, wait, turn not, hope, study.

My husband said the word "cling" resonated with him. Which verb(s) resonate with you? For me they beckon the question which duty, Lord, do you want me to give attention to, or is there one more than another I need to work on to better serve you? I think I will ponder "make straight."

*I took the liberty to change the word son to child in the first verse.

Grace & peace!

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