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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Sunday, December 29, 2019  

Today’s Scripture Reading | Hebrews 1:1–4

Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. (NRSV)

As I read this passage describing the nature of God, I am reminded of one of the most convincing messages about the existence of God I have ever heard, one I first heard when Marcus Borg retold it from the Fourth Church pulpit.

It’s a story about a three-year-old girl who was the only child in her family until one day her parents came home from the hospital with a new baby brother for her. The little girl is delighted.

“But after they’ve been home for a couple of hours, the little girl tells her parents that she wants to be with the baby in the baby’s room, alone, with the door shut. She’s absolutely insistent about the door being shut. It kind of gives her folks the willies, you know? They know she’s a good little girl, but they’ve heard about sibling rivalry and all of this.

“Then they remember that they’ve recently installed an intercom system in preparation for the arrival of the new baby, and they realize that they can let their little girl do this, and if they hear the slightest weird thing happening, they can be in there in a flash.

“So they let their little girl go into the room. They close the door behind her. They race to the listening post. They hear her footsteps move across the room. They imagine her now standing over the baby’s crib, and then they hear her say to her two-day-old baby brother, ‘Tell me about God. I’ve almost forgotten.’”

We all come from God and we all return to God, but somehow along the journey of life it is all too easy to forget this simple, profound truth. We forget what God is like; we forget that every person is a child of God, loved by God and precious in the sight of God. How different the world would be if every person lived out of this truth.

Loving God, I came from you, and I know I will return to you. Help me to live each day as your child and to honor each person as your beloved child. Amen.

Written by John W. W. Sherer, Organist and Director of Music

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