Romans 9:1-5 (NRSV)
Chapter 9I am speaking the truth in ChristI am not lying; my conscience confirms it by the Holy Spirit Verse 2I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. Verse 3For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my own people, my kindred according to the flesh. Verse 4They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; Verse 5to them belong the patriarchs, and from them, according to the flesh, comes the Messiah, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen.
This week’s continuing theme of God’s abundance shows up again in today’s reading from Paul’s letter to the Romans. Paul is reminding his readers that God gives and gives and gives. God gives the law, the traditions of worship, and the renewal of God’s promises. God is a giver. First and foremost, God gives us God’s unending love. Paul is convicted here to announce this good news—to share it, to let those for whom it is given know they are included in these promises. Everything we have is a gift from God. In that constant awareness we can live with gratitude. We will worship together face to face again (some of us may already be doing that by the time you read this), but it’s important to remember that wherever God is, we have an opportunity for praise and worship—and our God is present everywhere.
Eternal God, thank you for the Holy Spirit who leads us in the truth. Thank you for the gifts you have so freely first given us. Help us to share your love and your promises in word and deed with all those we meet. Amen.