What does God’s call mean for us? What can we expect when we receive God’s call? These are the questions at the heart of this week’s Lectionary, and they flow beautifully out of last week’s challenge.
The clear progression is from Moses’ own personal salvation (last week) to his call to go back and save God’s (and his) people, in spite of his fears, uncertainties and the struggles which will come (this week).
The movement is from Peter’s declaration of who Jesus is, and, the foundations of Church in bringing Christ to the world (last week) to Jesus’ embrace of the cross and call for us to follow (this week).
The Romans reading supports both the Gospel and the Moses story as it calls God’s people to live in love for one another and for enemies, giving themselves for the well-being of others in practical ways.
Finally, the Psalm expresses praise for God’s salvation and the plea for God to recognise the innocence of the Psalmist and God’s people – even as Jesus suffered though innocent.
So, what God may be wanting us to hear this week is that we are all called to follow Christ to be liberators of others, serving and loving all people, including our enemies, and that as we respond to this call we must be willing to lay our lives down and embrace the inevitable suffering and sacrifice that will come. Yet, even in the midst of this tough word is a light of hope. It is in this self-giving love that we find our ‘souls’ (our true, God-given selves) and we discover true, abundant life.
May we thank God for God’s call, and respond willingly and sacrificially, laying down our comforts, our needs, our preferences and even our lives to live as people of all-embracing love. Prayerfully, Rev Tania.