Wednesday, December 18, 2013
of crocus and new life
Good afternoon friends,
First, a reminder: Saturday morning at 9:30 we'll be putting together Christmas baskets at Laurelton for distribution to local families. If you'd like to come for breakfast or to help out, that would be great. This weekend we're also hosting our annual live nativity. It's a great chance to see or participate in the Christmas story from a new perspective. Every year I've been part of it, I have seen a different aspect of Christmas. The nativity runs from 6:30-8:30 Saturday and Sunday evening and we can always use more actors.
Our reading today presents a vision of God's redemption of the world. Today's world is far from perfect, so we need the hope God gives us for a better, more peaceful world. As we keep that vision in our heart, we can be part of moving the world closer to that vision.
The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad, the desert shall rejoice and blossom; like the crocus 2it shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the majesty of Carmel and Sharon. They shall see the glory of the Lord, the majesty of our God. 3Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. 4Say to those who are of a fearful heart, “Be strong, do not fear! Here is your God. He will come with vengeance, with terrible recompense. He will come and save you.”
5Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped; 6then the lame shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy. For waters shall break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert; 7the burning sand shall become a pool, and the thirsty ground springs of water; the haunt of jackals shall become a swamp, the grass shall become reeds and rushes. 8A highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Holy Way; the unclean shall not travel on it, but it shall be for God’s people; no traveler, not even fools, shall go astray. 9No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast come up on it; they shall not be found there, but the redeemed shall walk there.10And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.