Our Covenant

March 4, 2012
2nd Sunday in Lent
lectionary focus: Genesis 17: 1-7, 15-16; Romans 4: 13-25; Mark 8: 31-38

Good morning again.

I like to make lists. I write down the things I need to do, like: do laundry and pay bills and what to get at the grocery store. For years, I would put on my to-do list to Exercise…but then…it wouldn’t get done. I mean, I had to do laundry so we had clean clothes to wear and I had to grocery shop so we could eat, but exercise? eh. whatever. It was not one of those “had to do it” kind of things.
Then last summer, I decided it had to be done. So I started jogging. It was hard. I wanted to quit. It didn’t have to be done. Then I found out that my friend Patricia had started jogging, too. She also thought it was hard. To keep us going, to keep us true to our plan, we contracted together. We would each work hard and then we would run in a three mile race together in October. Well, I couldn’t quit then! I had promised Patricia. Since she had promised me, she couldn’t quit either. And guess what? Last October, we ran together in our first three mile race–and we both finished it–and it was fun–and we are both still running. By making an agreement to each other, by reminding each other that we do not have to do it alone, we have been able to keep on going.

Throughout the Bible, God makes covenants, formal agreements, with His people. Following these models, we, too, are in covenant with God. Together we–God and us–agree to be there for each other. We are here to do God’s work; and God is always here to help us. We are here to love God and each other; and God always loves all of us. By coming together each Sunday, we remember that we are in community together with God, that we are in covenant together with God. And so our work for God is not a chore, it is a joy. Our work for God is fun time together that makes us feel good. Being in covenant with God makes us want to shout that word that we packed away last week…shhhh, and during this season of Lent, we think about our covenant with God. We are thankful that we are His people, and together, with Him, we keep on going. We are not alone.

Will you pray with me? (This is an echo prayer: the leader says a line and the children repeat it back.)

Dear Lord,
Thank You
for being here with us.
Help me
to be here with You.

We are not Christians alone. My mission is to share, inspire, and encourage.

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