Gift: Fear of the Lord (Wonder and Awe) – With the gift of wonder and awe (fear of the lord), we are aware of the glory and majesty of God. A person with wonder and awe knows that God is the perfection of all we desire: perfect knowledge, perfect goodness, perfect power, and perfect love.
Reading: 1 Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her service is at an end, her guilt is expiated; Indeed, she has received from the hand of the LORD double for all her sins. (Isaiah 40:2)
Go up onto a high mountain, Zion, herald of glad tidings; Cry out at the top of your voice, Jerusalem, herald of good news! Fear not to cry out and say to the cities of Judah: Here is your God! Here comes with power the Lord GOD, who rules by his strong arm; Here is his reward with him, his recompense before him. (Isaiah 40:9-10)
Observation: I started out reading the through all the readings this morning before deciding on the three verses above from the first reading to journal on. Originally, I heard the gospel reading telling me that God understands that I am a sinner and he is looking forward to celebrating when I can conquer sin completely when I surrender completely to his grace that will accomplish it. When I went back to read the first reading, I saw that God was saying through the prophet Isaiah that Jerusalem, and now by default us, does not have to continue to be in service to sin. In the 9th and 1oth verse, it says that the good news needs to be heralded from a high mountain. I don’t think the prophet could have seen the internet as the high mountain, but I can’t imagine a better way to herald the good news in our day.
Personification: Peace Today, I will try to bring the fruit of peace that comes from the Word of God to my little corner of the world. I do not know how I will get the opportunity to do this, but I will stay awake to make sure that I am able to display peace that comes from the grace of God, which is the only thing keeping me from losing that peace.
Prayer: Lord, help me to see the way to follow you. I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit. Amen.