A shared meal

Bible Reading: Exodus 16: 1 - 8
Author: Tim Getz (New York, US)
Thursday 13 September 2018 © The Upper Room.
During my undergraduate college years, most of my friends belonged to a Jewish congregation that began each weekend with worship and a shared evening meal. I attended several of these Shabbat services, which were led in Hebrew. I did not understand the language or the pattern of worship, but I used the time to pray and came to enjoy thepeace and tranquillity of being included in the congregation’s worship.

Though I had initially felt awkward and out of place, the Shabbat services reminded me of shared meals in my home church, and the worshippers’ conviviality revealed to me that these were God’s people, too. Although I was far from home and far from the rituals I knew, I enjoyed learning about my friends’ faith.

Moses and Aaron had already led the Israelites far from home whenthe tribe began grumbling about lack of provisions. Their complaints against the Lord had more to do with not trusting God than with the two brothers’ poor leadership. Like the Israelites’ grumbling, my insecurity at the Shabbat services stemmed from my discomfort with the unfamiliar. Yet when I was receptive to someone else’s worship tradition, I experienced God’s shalom, which is freely available to any who will accept it.
 
Prayer: Dear Lord, teach us to wait with expectant hearts for your blessings to be revealed. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen

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