March 19, 2020

Published March 20, 2020 by St Matthews Lutheran Church in Daily Message

        1From the wilderness of Sin the whole congregation of the Israelites journeyed by stages, as the Lord commanded.

                                                      Exodus 17:1

Israel wandered in the wilderness for forty years and they complained – not enough to drink, not enough to eat, no variety in their diet because manna got old pretty quick and it went bad if they tried to hoard it. We may understand what that feels like right now. We’re limited in terms of our social contacts; some of us are self-quarantining which is even more isolating; and there’s no toilet paper to be had in all the land!

The metaphorical wilderness is a time of uncertainty, of questioning, and yes- of railing against God. But it is also a time of blessing. In the 40 years of their wandering, the Israelites learned to trust God and they developed their identity as the children of God. We have the opportunity to do the same. Spend some time in centering prayer. Be quiet and rest in his presence. Trust God to provide strength and hope for each new day.

Let us pray:

Merciful God, in the stillness of our souls we listen for your voice to know again that you are God. Quiet our restless hearts with the knowledge that you stand with us in the wilderness keeping watch over your own. Strengthen our faith and light the lamp of hope in our hearts. Amen.