The What and Who of Meandering About

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Divine Requirements

And what does the Lord require of you?

This is the million dollar question, isn't it?

Listen to what Scripture says in Micah 6:6-8:
" 'With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old?
Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil?
Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?'
He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?"

Like the inquisitor, I want to know what it is that I can bring before the Lord to please God. 
What sacrifice can I offer? 
What prized possession can I give? 
What pain can I inflict upon myself to honor God?

What does God want? 
What does God require?

God wants me.  God desires me to be a partner in God's kingdom work in the here and now. 

God wants me...

To do justice...
It is much easier to talk about it.  It is much less of a hassle to seek revenge or vengeance, rather than to do justice. 
Justice requires thought not just emotion. 
Justice requires action not reaction. 
Justice requires goodness not repaying evil with evil. 
Justice requires prayer not self-reliance. 
Justice requires me.

To love kindness...
It is much easier to be nice than to be kind. 
Kindness requires me to join in the human race. 
Kindness requires me to not just look another in the eye, but to see the person. 
Kindness requires me to not just listen to the words of another, but to hear the overflow of their heart that spills from their lips. 
Kindness requires me to not just cordially shake a hand, but to reach out beyond myself into the life of another. 
Kindness requires more than convenient acts. 
Kindness requires the work of calloused hands, tear filled eyes and open hearts.
Kindness requires me.

To walk humbly with your God...
This is not about the busy-ness of being a Christian.  This is about living life as a Child of God. 
This is not about rules and laws.  This is about allowing the living God to be ALIVE! 
This is not about me, so I must get out of the way.  Allow God to be God.  Allow God to use the me God created me to be. 
This is not just about doing.  This is about being still.  This is about the hard work of waiting on the Lord.  This is about spending time in prayer, learning the pulse of God's heart and listening to the rhythms of God's love; then walking where God leads.

What does the Lord require of me?

I can think of no better question to ask during the season of Lent.

Let us have the courage to join in the business of doing justice, loving kindness and walking humbly with your God.  This is the work of the kingdom of God.  This is what the Lord requires of me.

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