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July 3, 2020

“Your hands have made and fashioned me; give me understanding that I may learn your commandments.” Psalm 119:73

Well, today is the 110th edition of Dispatches From a Suburban Parson During a Pandemic. The Old Testament passage for today from the Daily Texts has me thinking of handmade goods. Not long ago, on Father’s Day, Anders presented me with a Jawa he made from Perler beads (for real). We love looking for hand-crafted goods in the little shops of southwest Michigan and Door County, WI. It always feels good to bring home something that is truly unique, one of a kind.

The psalmist praises God for God’s handmade creation of the psalmist. Not one of us is here by accident. You and I were made and fashioned by the hands of God. The implications for this are staggering. As the old poster put it, “I know I’m somebody ’cause God don’t make no junk.” You are holy and beloved. God wanted to be in relationship with you so much that God invented you. And, when your life went wrong, God loved you so much that Jesus Christ was born into this world to die for your salvation.

This is not trite sentimentalism. Let’s look at the New Testament passage for the day: “And this is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his son Jesus Christ and love one another” (1 John 3:23). We were handmade to be loved by God, but also to praise God and love one another. If I am handmade, so are you. If you are, so are they. There is not a single person on this earth who is not beloved by God, who is not worthy of our love.

The praise of the psalmist drives our ethical lives. It’s why Jesus told stories about a lost coin, a lost sheep, a lost son. The wide embraces of Jesus’ love brings salvation to the whole world. It’s why the Old Testament is littered with commandments to remember the widow, the orphan, the alien. It’s why, when staring down a 400-year legacy of racism in America, we proclaim Black lives matter. Everyone is handmade by God. No one should be deprived of the human dignity with which God has endowed them.

Like me, you probably feel a bit rough around the edges. Imperfect. Slightly off. Well, that’s what happens when things aren’t mass produced; they end up with the quirks of the Creator.

You are handmade by God. You are redeemed and remade by Jesus Christ. Let your life today give praise to God and loving service to your neighbor.

Be well, friends. You are loved.

Creating God, you spangled the stars in the cosmos and set planets spinning in their orbits. Yet still you thought the universe needed a me. Thank you for making me, for loving me. Help me to work for the well-being of all people, of each person, that they, too, may come to know your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Image: Three handmade children of God, enjoying God’s creation.

From → COVID-19

One Comment
  1. John Lattyak permalink

    Thank you for your perseverance in posting these daily blogs.

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