“As a pleasing odor I will accept you, when I bring you out from the peoples, and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered; and I will manifest my holiness among you in the sight of the nations.” – Ezekiel 22:41
TODAY’S SCRIPTURE READING: Ezekiel 19-22
I’m not sure if it is Old Testament fatigue, COVID-19 fatigue, or something else. But much of the writings of the prophets in the Old Testament seem to soundthe same. There is always a warning about turning to God and living the right way. The people of Israel and Judah never seem to listen. There will be ajudgment that is coming.
But every now and then, we find glimpses of hope in the midst of these prophetic warnings. Here in Ezekiel, the prophet speaks about a restoration that is coming for Israel. Israel, a nation that had scattered and found itself in exile, will be brought together again. I love God’s promise to Israel: “I wil manifest my holiness among you in the sight of the nations.”
I believe God might be making a similar promise to us today. Over the last several years, church attendance across the world has declined. The church was once the center of the community, and now it is another option. For the last six months, many people have become disconnected from the church and scattered. Might God be saying to us: “I will accept you, when I bring you out from the peoples, and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered.” As we look ahead to the new and amazing things that God wants to do in our churches and our communities, might God be saying to us: “I will manifest my holiness among you in the sight of the nations.” Might God be promising a restoration to His Church?
The local church has been and will continue to be the hope of the world, and I am excited to see what God will do next through our local church. Have a great weekend and I look forward to being with you in worship online beginning Sunday at 9 AM and on campus at 9:30 an 11:00!
P.S. This Sunday, we will celebrate Communion in our on-campus services at 9:30 and 11:00. You can watch this quick video to learn more about what Communion will look like on Sunday. If you are not able to be with us on Sunday morning, I hope you will plan to join us on Sunday evening anytime between 6:00-7:00 PM for Drive Up Communion in the church parking lot. You can come and share prayer and Communion with us. I hope to see you there!