Chronological Bible, January 30: Fellowship of the salt…

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  • Leviticus 1:1-4:35

 “And every offering of your grain offering you shall season with salt; you shall not allow the salt of the covenant of your God to be lacking from your grain offering. With all your offerings you shall offer salt.” –Leviticus 2:13, NKJV

Commentators do not completely agree on what this salt requirement means, but those agree it is a reference to God’s faithfulness. Matthew Henry goes further to say that as salt is on every table and eating together in that culture was an act of fellowship, the requirement of salt in all the offerings served as continual reminder of God’s presence and His desire to fellowship with His people.

How incredible that God would choose such a seemingly tiny ingredient to represent His faithfulness! May we remember it well.

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Image by Ulrik De Wachter

Chronological Bible: January 16…with those who mourn…

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  • Genesis 47:1-50:26

What stands out to you about this passage? What strikes me is that the people mourning with Joseph likely had very little relationship with Joseph’s father. Though Joseph mourned the loss of a loved one, the Egyptians mourned the loss of a loved one’s loved one. The Egyptians knew not the relationship, but they knew the son in the relationship. They knew his stewardship, his leadership, and his care for their people. They knew his character, his history, and his life as a trusted man of the pharaoh. And so they mourned with him. They shared the burden, not because they also lost someone, but because the man they cared for and respected was hurting. They felt his pain with him so that he need not feel it alone.

And from everything we know, they did not follow God.

How much more should we that do join with those who mourn, support those around us whether they believe or not, and be the one who cares so deeply about those around us that we feel along with them.

Rather than buck up and stoically state: “God knew,” we should break down, share a tear and quietly whisper, “God knew.”

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Psalm 141: Receiving correction…

1135125_11611023“Let the righteous strike me; it shall be a kindness. And let him rebuke me; it shall be as excellent oil; let my head not refuse it.” –verse 5

Do you seek correction? Do you long for a group or even a person who will look at the junk you throw out and call you on it? Are you willing to hear a differing viewpoint, that you might be better, closer, more humble in your walk?

Are you teachable? And do you seek opportunities to be radically taught?

For we cannot be our constant own correctors. We cannot see that to which we are too close. We do not know what we do not know. We live insensitive to that which has been around too long.

Only the viewpoint of another can dislodge that which has put a crick in your walk so imbedded that you have accommodated the crick rather than worked it out. Seek out fellowship that brings correction.

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Psalm 133: The honor of anointing…

850631_10577244To be anointed with oil is to be chosen. Publicly identified as separate, different. The honor of oil running down the head and beard beyond what any clean-freak can imagine. It may be messy, slippery, and need a good rubbing in to carry on, but the honor of the anointing outweighs all that.

The anointing in this passage is the brotherhood dwelling in unity. Messy, slippery, and needing a good massage, the honor of dwelling in unity outweighs all that might be perceived as a gooey, icky mess.

For in unity, the Spirit thrives, the Savior moves, and the God of heaven sees the bride readying herself for the ultimate wedding feast.

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Losing harmony…

It has been a while. The drape-covered piano sits in the perfect spot at home. Perfect light, all the music within reach, but it has been a while. As writer by calling and administrator by profession, I spend more time tickling a keyboard than tickling the ivories.

And I miss it.

A creative outlet left to gather dust for no significant reason. I notice the dustiness lays not only on the instrument. I used to be able to choose a harmony in any song and belt it with confidence. From youth group ages ago, to choir, to church, my musical ear could create harmony against almost any melody. Who knew that was a honed skill? I suspect that muscle memory in my fingers is not the only memory at play. Musical memory–an innate knowing of which chords go together, which sounds work, where to clash and how to resolve that clash–I now know that was honed along with every song I played, and especially the ones through which I stumbled.

My musical memory is dull. It stands out now in the small church group we have–well, it stands out to me. I have lost the harmony.

And yet, deep inside, the musical memory can still be stirred. Another alto in the room hits a harmonizing note and I can jump on that bandwagon. A bass hits a different harmony, and I can jump that up a level and go from there. And it amazes me how the fellowship in music has stirred the musical memory.

It shows me that when we feel spiritually rusty, fellowship can hit that note and bring us right back to where we were. Walking alongside a fellow Christian gives us those opportunities to remember, to stir the stilled waters, and we get right back in fellowship with God. We need not start from scratch. Just hop on with another and keep going.

“Jesus said to him, ‘He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean…'” –John 13:10, NKJV

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