Devotion and Prayer for Week of June 1, 2014

Meditation for the Week of June 1, 2014 

Every summer my congregation reviews a section of the Small Catechism.  This treasure of the faith contains the basic texts of the Christian life, along with brief explanations that apply them to us personally.  Although many Lutherans learn the catechism in confirmation class, we often forget and neglect this wonderful resource.  Martin Luther himself said, “I must still read and study daily, and yet I cannot master it as I wish, but must remain a child and pupil of the Catechism, and am glad so to remain.”  This summer we are reviewing the creed and its explanation, and so the FHP devotions for the month of June will focus on these texts.

 

The First Article:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.

What does this mean?

I believe that God has made me and all creatures; that He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears and all my members, my reason and all my senses, and still takes care of them.  He also gives me clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals, and all I have.  He richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life.  He defends me against all danger and guards and protects me from all evil.  All this He does only out of fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me.  For all this it is my duty to that and praise, serve and obey Him.  This is most certainly true.

 

Meditation:

God did not just make the world.  God made you.  You were no accident, or the product of random events.  God made every bit and piece of you.  He made every part of your body: your eyes and ears, your toenails and belly button.  He’s got every last hair of your head numbered (no matter how many are left, or how grey they are).  God has also given you every last quality that makes you you: your sense of style, your musical talent (or lack thereof), and your sense of humor, even the sound of your voice.  Most importantly, He has given you an immortal soul.

God didn’t just make you, He takes care of you.  I’ve just recently planted vegetables in my garden.  I’ve got peas, beans, carrots, tomatoes, broccoli, lettuce and zucchini going, just to name a few of them.  But I don’t stop with the planting.  I’ve got a long summer of weeding and watering ahead of me.  Some of the plants may need to be cut back or trained to grow in a certain way.  It’s hard work.  Similarly, God didn’t just make you and leave you to fend for yourself.  He cares for you in two specific ways.  First, He gives you all the good things that you need.  He gives you food and drink for your physical needs, as well as companionship and support to care for your social and psychological needs.  Second, He keeps you from the evil that will harm you.  Again, this is not just the things and people that will harm your body, but the sins and temptations that will destroy your soul.

Why would God do such a thing?  He’s your Father and He loves you.  It’s that simple.  You don’t need to earn His love, and you never could, anyway.  He made you and He loves you.

What’s left for you to do?  Nothing, really.  You can say “Thank you,” and live as He’s made you to live, serving Him by loving other people.

 

Our Weekly Prayer 

Heavenly Father, thank you for making me who I am, and for caring for me throughout my life.  Give me faith to trust in Your providence, and to serve You with gladness all of my life; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, who with You and the Holy Spirit are one God, now and forever.