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Lent 2024: Will You Listen? by Pastor William H. Lamar IV


 

"Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, “As for me, I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you  and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the domestic animals, and every animal of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark.  I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.”  God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations:  I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds,  I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh, and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh.  When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.”  God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.”

Genesis 9: 8 – 17

 


Ash Wednesday

February 14, 2024


Will You Listen?


The first Sunday of Lent’s Hebrew Bible passage thrusts us into the place where we again hear God’s voice. Let’s pause here. Church folk have grown so familiar with the language and thus the idea of God speaking that we hardly pay attention. This is wonderful! This is preposterous! Creator God talks? Like us? Oh, that we would hear God speak today as wars rage and ice caps melt and humans destroy and devour one another. I find myself thankful for the faint promise, the fragile hope that God who spoke then may still be speaking now.


And God speaks to an imperfect family like the ones that shaped and formed us. God speaks to Noah and to Noah’s descendants. If God speaks, ordinary people like us are God’s conversation partners. And God does not have a human-centered vision, God’s speaks to ordinary Noah in hopes that Noah will not just secure a future for his progeny. God wants Noah to help secure a future for every creature of the earth. God’s concern is for all that God has made. And God makes a covenant of protection and promise with a common human family. This covenant is also for us, ordinary folk though we may be.


God has kept God’s covenant. Many of us, however, have decided not to bother with caring for one another and for creation. If we keep refusing to uphold our part of the covenant, we will destroy ourselves, and that destruction will come quite soon. Yet, written into nature itself is a beautiful reminder that God speaks. The rainbow is our sublime reminder that God beckons us to keep our part of the bargain. We must protect and preserve life’s fragile possibilities for all creation with God. That is how we will thrive through this Lenten season and through all the days to come.



                                                                Reverend William H. Lamar IV

Pastor

Metropolitan A.M.E. Church

 

Prayer:  Mother/Father God, work with your people to look to the rainbow and keep the covenant. Amen.

 

Lent 2024

We invite you to join us in reflection, meditation and prayer for a season of renewal, repentance and rejoicing from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday.


Each day is a reflection representing the thoughts and aspirations of the members and friends of Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church expressing what the season of Lent means to them.  Their wide range of perspectives describe how this time of renewal, repentance and rejoicing has been and will be used to focus on Jesus’ life, crucifixion and resurrection.


Read along with us each day or download the book to read and write along with us offline.


 

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