The Second Sunday of Lent and our second respit from the discipline of Lent. I usually try to relax on Sundays, use it as a real day of rest, especially now that I am working long hours trying to meet difficult deadlines, but it is hard when you have a mind that is always trying to run on ahead.
However, this evening I want to look back, to reflect on something sparked by this morning’s sermon. In the process of using Abraham’s sacrifice of Isaac as the central theme, we eventually arrived at God the Father, who tested Abraham as only a father could and if you can accept the context, like God himself was tested in giving his own Son over to be sacrificed.
What happened to me was that I got stuck on the idea of the Father who is the subject of the prayer form that Jesus gave to his disciples. More specifically, “Our Father who, and I began thinking of a list of things that might follow that phrase, beyond the original, “art in heaven.”
Here is what I came up with upon reflection.
Our Father who:
sees all things, even the things hidden in our hearts, yet who still sustains us and forgives us.
knows all things and from whom nothing can be hidden, even the future.
judges all of things impartially, for he is not a respecter of persons and whose mercy endures forever.
tests all things as Abraham was, as Job was, as Joseph was, as Daniel was, as the Baptist was, as Peter was, as we all have been or will be.
gives us examples of faith in those who pass those tests and show us the way forward.
brought Israel out of Egypt and brings us out of the Egypt of sin and desolation into eternal life.
sustains us though every trial and if necessary gives us a way of escape.
works all things together for our good and counts even the hairs on our head more than many sparrows.
is faithful, even when we are not.
forgives us, even when we were yet sinners and now despite our continued sin.
freely gives us all things, meeting our every need in Christ Jesus.
sent Christ and also sends us to do the good work he has planned ahead for us to do.
raised Christ from the dead and will raise us on the last day.
That only touches the surfact of Our Father who, but you get the drift. God is the one who initiates, we are the ones who respond.
Our God is the Father who…
Grace and peace to your week and may the God who created you and looks upon you with grace and mercy in your time of need, sustain you and complete the good work he has begun in you. Amen.