As we journey together through Lent, Christians throughout Columbia will be sharing their own beautifully written ‘letters from the heart.’ Each will be accompanied by corresponding relevant scripture verse(s), and linked to sources for further study. If you would like to join us on Columbia’s Lenten journey, please send us your ‘letter from the heart’ by email. Especially meaningful submissions will be printed. Let us continue our Lenten journey of repentance, meditation, and anticipation day-by-day, to its glorious culmination on Easter morning.
Today’s lesson from Genesis is in the time of the seven-year famine. Joseph, not recognized by his brothers, sends all but one home, their donkeys loaded down with bags of grain and provisions for their journey. Generously, Joseph secretly has his servant return every man’s payment to each man’s sack before they leave. (Genesis 2:18-28)
Our lesson from First Corinthians is a letter from Paul teaching that believers need not associate with or be led astray by those who are ‘sexually immoral or greedy, or are idolaters, revelers, drunkards, or robbers.’ I have always thought that this is a good not-to-do list for me! (1 Corinthians 5:9-6:8)
And, finally, our lesson from the Gospel of Mark is the parable of the sower and the seeds. Where will each of us, as a seed, land? Will we, as seeds, be on the open path of wickedness with the words blown away by Satan before we even think about them? Will we, as seeds, rest on rocky ground – hearing but not letting the words take root as we are led astray by people referenced in Paul’s letter?
Will we, as seeds, be sown among the thorns letting the worldly greed for wealth and material things choke the words from our every day’s thoughts? Or will we, as seeds, seek good soil, grow deep roots, bask freely in the sun and rain, hearing and accepting the word as a way of life 24/7? We, each of us, make these choices daily.
As I searched these scriptures for a common thread I found the word ‘greed’ in two of the readings, which made me notice the lack of greed in Joseph. ‘Greed’ is a word we often hear today – a trait we still must work against is we are to be more like Jesus day-in and day-out.
Are we asking people what we can do to help in our employment famine of today? We all can help with job searches, food banks, soup kitchens, clothing donations – are we listening for the needs of those whose lives we can touch?
Lastly, we can be more the person Jesus teaches us to be by praying for help throughout the day.
Columbia, South Carolina
If you enjoyed this Lenten meditation, you can find more at Sharon's Columbia Biblical Studies Examiner homepage.