Scripture: Luke 6:1-11
Reflection: Living with a toddler will teach you a few things about human nature. One of the things we are learning thanks to our little ones is that we are all, on some level, creatures of habit. In our house, we keep a fairly regular routine, especially in the evenings: play-dinner-bath-books-bed. I didn’t realize just how attached our daughter had become to this routine until one day when she was about 2 years old, I tried to suggest she have a bath before she ate dinner. This did not compute. After much coaxing, I convinced her to flex a little and get into the bathtub before the high chair, but it wasn’t easy. In her young mind, it just wasn’t how things were done.
We tend to look down on the Pharisees for just not “getting it” about Jesus, and in particular, his attitude toward certain established religious practices. But, if we are honest, it is hard for all of us to step back from our religious routines to reflect on their meaningfulness. We may not share the Pharisees concerns over what can and cannot happen on the sabbath, but we, too, can become comfortable – and even rigid – about what is and isn’t acceptable Christian practice.
Each of us need a reminder to occasionally step back from our worship, our devotional life, and our service activities and connect again to their intended purpose, which is to glorify God. When Jesus fed the hungry and healed the sick on the sabbath, he was showing the Pharisees (and us!) that tending to those in need is at the heart of that which is holy – that these are the things that bring glory to God. Take a minute today to think about your own religious habits and routines. What is at the heart of living the faith for you? Are the things you are doing connecting you more deeply to God’s heart, or have they become rote? If the latter, what new practice might help reconnect you?
Prayer: Dear God, give me a moment’s pause to reflect on your grace for me today. Help me to be honest about my religious routines – where they’ve become dull and dry, and where they are vital and alive – and give me the courage to shake things up if it will bring you joy. Amen.
Author: Anna Dickson
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].