Reflections: Saturday of the 13th Week after Trinity

Today’s Reading: Introit for the 14th Sunday after Trinity
(Psalm 84:1-2a, 4, 10b, 11b; antiphon: vs.9-10a)
Daily Lectionary: 2 Kings 2:1-18; Ephesians 4:1-24

How lovely is Your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts! My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the Lord. My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God. (From the Introit for the 14th Sunday after Trinity)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Does your soul long for the courts of the Lord? Or would you rather sleep in on Sunday morning? Do your heart and flesh cry out for the living God and His Word? Or do the other things that you have going on–your sports or friends or parties or whatever–come first and then church if there’s time left over? How can we pray these words of the psalm when we don’t really mean them? We know we SHOULD want Christ’s gifts most of all, but we don’t.

Good news! The words of the psalms are always first of all of Jesus’ words! Jesus longs for the courts of the Lord, to be with His heavenly Father. Even when He was a boy, Jesus was hanging out in the temple where God’s Word was being taught. Jesus loved nothing more than His Father’s Word. And it’s His love of the Father’s Word that brought Him to earth in the flesh to die for sinners who could care less about His Word. Jesus is the Word made flesh who dies on the Cross of Calvary for those who have so many more important things to do than hear God’s Word and receive His gifts.

When you go to church tomorrow, you’re not going because you are trying to get all hyped up and really excited for God’s Word. You might be happy to go to church tomorrow. You might be grumbling the whole way there, wishing you were back under the covers in your bed. But when you go, what the Lord has for you is not a program to get you all charged up for Him. Rather, He has gifts for you. There in the Divine Service, the Lord will cover you with Jesus, who loves the Father’s Word. The Lord will announce that your despising His Word is forgiven. The Word Himself will fill you when you eat and drink His Body and Blood. There, filled with Jesus, you will learn to truly love and rejoice in the gifts that Christ has for you, because the One who lives in you is Jesus, who always loves the Father’s Word. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.

I love your kingdom, Lord, The place of your abode, The Church our blest Redeemer saved With His own precious blood. (“I Love Your Kingdom, Lord” LSB 651, st.1)