Herrenhuter readings for Tuesday, the 9th February 2016

 

The Psalmist sings: “The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food at the proper time. You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing.” (Psa 145:15-16 NIV)

Our Lord Jesus Christ preaches: “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Mat 6:26 NIV)

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you always +

Dear friends of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ: In this mornings reading we read a portion of the Old Testament prayer, which even today is used by many to address the triune God before they enjoy the gifts which he has granted them to eat this day. This psalm acknowledges that all good and perfect gifts come from God our heavenly Father. It is he who lets it rain over good and evil and let’s grass grow for the beast of the fields and seeds for the birds of the skies. God himself grants seasons and times for things to be planted, grow and bring forth fruit plentifully. It is he, who opens his hands feeding countless across the globe day in, day out. It is he, who satisfies the desires of all the living. Without him we creatures remain restless, empty and hungry, but in him we find peace, rest and the fulfilment of all of our desires and deepest needs. If we have him, we don’t ask for heaven or earth, because man does not live from bread alone, but rather from every Word spoken by our heavenly Father, the one God, who together with the Son and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns now and forever.

We sinful human beings often crave the creation more than the creator. It’s like forgetting the daily light of the sun and worshipping the reflections of the moon at night. We forget the real thing and search and follow instead the images and copies instead. That’s a calamity and most dreadful malady. That’s the source of all our worries and misguided concerns and wrong priorities. God himself wants to overcome this our lack of trust and deep seated disbelief. So he sent us his only begotten Son Jesus Christ, who became one of us, our very own brother, living without a home to call his own and without even a place to put down his head. Still he overcame the hunger and thirst of 40 days and 40 nights by relying entirely on the goodness of his loving & caring Father in heaven. Not resorting to shortcuts or own ways out, but rather waiting for God’s good time and due season. He was obedient to the very end. Doing the will of the Father to the last iota. Missing out nothing. Fulfilling each and every requirement. And still he found enough to feed thousands in the desert. He shared divine abundance, delving into God’s richness fishing countless fish out of the deep seas, turning water into wine and granting living water to those, who would listen and hear him. His invitation stands: “Come to me all of you, who are wearisome and heavily burdened. I’ll give you rest! Come to me all you who are thirsty and hungry. I’ll quench your thirst. I’ll satisfy your hunger and desire – and give you peace!”

So: “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Mat 6:26 NIV) Of course you are – you and your children. Did he not feed the Egyptians & Joseph’s people in the time of terrible drought and famine in those ancient days? Did he not feed Elijah with those ravens in the wilderness and the widow and her frail son with oil in the jar and flour in the pot, which never ceased to yield? Isn’t that all written to strengthen your faith and encourage you in dire straits?

So we pray confidently to our heavenly Father for daily bread with the assurance of being heard by him  because his dear son, our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ himself taught us to pray: Give us our daily bread! And Martin Luther explains what this means, namely: “God gives daily bread, even without our prayer, to all wicked men; but we pray in this petition that He would lead us to know it, and to receive our daily bread with thanksgiving.” He goes on to explain what is meant by daily bread: “Everything that belongs to the support and wants of the body, such as meat, drink, clothing, shoes, house, homestead, field, cattle, money, goods, a pious spouse, pious children, pious servants, pious and faithful magistrates, good government, good weather, peace, health, discipline, honor, good friends, faithful neighbors, and the like.” Therefore don’t worry and be happy. Your Lord, your God cares for you better than any father on earth could ever do. Amen.

The peace of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ be with you always + Amen.

  1. Sing to the Lord of harvest,
    Sing songs of love and praise;
    With joyful hearts and voices
    Your alleluias raise.
    By him the rolling seasons
    In fruitful order move;
    Sing to the Lord of harvest
    A joyous song of love.
  2. God makes the clouds rain goodness,
    The deserts bloom and spring,
    The hills leap up in gladness,
    The valleys laugh and sing.
    God fills them with his fullness,
    All thing with large increase;
    He crowns the year with blessing,
    With plenty and with peace.
  3. Bring to this sacred altar
    The gifts his goodness gave,
    The golden sheaves of harvest,
    The souls Christ died to save.
    Your hearts lay down before him
    When at his feet you fall,
    And with your lives adore him
    Who gave his life for all.

Hymn # 493  Lutheran Worship Author: Johann Steurlein
Tune: Wie lieblich ist der Maien 1st Published in: 1581

 

 

About Wilhelm Weber jr

Rector of the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Tshwane
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