April 12, 2020
I bet that some of us, when we were growing up, were told that there were certain ways to behave in the church building, because it is God’s house. Maybe it was not to run, or to keep our voices quiet, or maybe we were taught to invite others in. This is God’s house.
In Isaiah 58, the author is addressing a people who have returned to Jerusalem, where the Temple — God’s house — was in shambles. In that rubble, the prophet challenges the people not to rebuild the building or to restore their religious rituals, but to care for the hungry, the weak and the vulnerable — the prophet called the people to become the house of God. We, too, are the house of God. We are called to become, as Isaiah promised long ago, “repairers of the breach, restorers of streets to live in.”
Together, we become the household of God through One Great Hour of Sharing. We extend shelter to those who have no place to stay, offer compassion to those who have pain — be it physical, emotional or spiritual — and we set a feast, with God, for those who lack access to enough food to eat.
When the wind and water wipe homes away, or bombs destroy the dwellings of the innocent, or people lack safe and affordable housing, One Great Hour of Sharing extends a roof.
When conflict and war cause famine, or the environment endangers the land of farmers, or those who work the fields are not paid enough to feed their families, One Great Hour of Sharing welcomes them to the table.
When water becomes scarce, or when it must be accessed by walking long and dangerous distances, or when the pipes or sources become poisoned, One Great Hour of Sharing rushes in as a spring of life-giving water.
We are the house of God. Let us welcome those without a home into God’s house. Let us invite those without enough to eat to God’s table. Let us invite those who thirst to the spring of God’s fountain. May we be called, as Isaiah said, “repairers of the breach, restorers of streets to live in.”
Bryce Wiebe, Director, Special Offerings and Appeals, Presbyterian Mission Agency
Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, April 12, 2020, the Resurrection of the Lord (Easter Day) (Year A)
Easter Day Readings:
First Reading Acts 10:34-43
Or alternate First Reading Jeremiah 31:1-6
Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24
Second Reading Colossians 3:1-4
Or alternate Second Reading Acts 10:34-43
Gospel John 20:1-18
Or alternate Gospel Matthew 28:1-10
Easter Evening Readings:
First Reading Isaiah 25:6-9
Second Reading 1 Corinthians 5:6b-8
Gospel Luke 24:13-49
Today’s Focus: Easter/One Great Hour of Sharing
Let us join in prayer for:
Let us pray:
Draw all people together, gracious God, and make us your house. Let us create a home and a wholeness for people in need, so that the whole human family will know your love. Amen.