4th Friday in Lent
I believe that Jesus Christ, true God, begotten of the Father in eternity, and also a true human being, born of the Virgin Mary, is my Lord. He has redeemed me, a lost and condemned human being. He has purchased and freed me from all sins, from death, and from the power of the devil, not with gold or silver but with his holy precious blood and with his innocent suffering and death. He has done all this in order that I may belong to him, live under him in his kingdom, and serve him in eternal righteousness, innocence and blessedness, just as he is risen from the dead and lives and rules eternally. This is most certainly true.
Let this be the summary of this article, that the little word “Lord” simply means the same as Redeemer, that is, he who has brought us back from the devil to God, from death to life, from sin to righteousness, and keep us there… Indeed, the entire gospel that we preach depends on the proper understanding of this article. Upon it all our salvation and blessedness are based, and it is so rich and broad that we can never learn it fully.
What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn it? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. Romans 8:31-33
SILENCE FOR MEDITATION
In the Old Testament, humankind was given the Ten Commandments. Part 1 of Luther’s small catechism provides the commandments in order, with an explanation of each of the commandments. In our human frailty, humankind was unable to keep these commandments, to live out each day with these rules for daily living. God had to go to such great lengths to save us, to give His only begotten Son to die for us, with his innocent suffering and death so that we may indeed live under him in his kingdom. We, as human beings just cannot do this on our own.
God so loved creation that he gave his Son for all humankind, and yet, daily, we find ourselves thinking that our success, our hard work is a product of our own ingenuity. Sometimes it is difficult to remind ourselves that our blessings come from God, and all of the good in our lives does indeed come from God. It is a reminder to pray, to appreciate our blessings, to share our blessings, to ask for forgiveness, to serve God each and every day, and to remind ourselves that we are beloved children of God.
Heavenly Father, keep me humble, as a beloved child of God, allow me to keep serving You, to keep You at the center of my life and all that I do. To be constantly reminded of compassion, love and peace as the cornerstones of my interactions throughout my day, to honor You and the gift of your only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. Continue to increase my understanding, so that I may live and serve under Him in His kingdom. Amen
Examine what you threw away today. Put a coin in your bank for everything that could have been recycled.