Blessing #21 - The freedom to read the Word in community
I've lately had the pleasure of joining in on the planning meetings for the worship services of the International Church that meets on KNU's campus. I'm helping plan a Passover Seder for them, and in extension some of their Holy Week services. The whole experience has been extremely moving.
I've really been enjoying how the planning meetings are run as small worship services: with directed prayer, hymns, scripture reading, and kinesthetic reflection... THEN the planning meeting. These past two weeks, the reflection time has been focused on art projects. We're supplied with paper and marking supplies (pencils, pens, pastels, etc.) and told to draw whatever reflects what we're focused on in the scripture passage.
This week was Exodus 6:1-13:
1 Then the L-RD said to Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh: Because of my mighty hand he will let them go; because of my mighty hand he will drive them out of his country.”
2 G-d also said to Moses, “I am the L-RD. 3 I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as G-d Almighty, but by my name the L-RD I did not make myself fully known to them. 4 I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, where they resided as foreigners. 5 Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving, and I have remembered my covenant.
6 “Therefore, say to the Israelites: ‘I am the L-RD, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment. 7 I will take you as my own people, and I will be your G-d. Then you will know that I am the L-RD your G-d, who brought you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. 8 And I will bring you to the land I swore with uplifted hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob. I will give it to you as a possession. I am the L-RD.’”
9 Moses reported this to the Israelites, but they did not listen to him because of their discouragement and harsh labor.
10 Then the L-RD said to Moses, 11 “Go, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt to let the Israelites go out of his country.”
12 But Moses said to the L-RD, “If the Israelites will not listen to me, why would Pharaoh listen to me, since I speak with faltering lips?”
13 Now the L-RD spoke to Moses and Aaron about the Israelites and Pharaoh king of Egypt, and he commanded them to bring the Israelites out of Egypt.
I was particularly struck by verse six. Let me repeat it for you:
“Therefore, say to the Israelites: ‘I am the L-RD, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment.'"For my reflection, I drew this (All my years of doodling in math class paid off on one thing - I gained the ability to draw hands.):
|You can find reflections for all of the verses here, and last week's reflections for Exodus 5 here.|
This process of artistic prayer has been incredibly good for me, so I'm thinking I want to start doing this regularly, even though I won't be with this group constantly. It's been nice communing with G-d creatively. I bought and was given some art supplies, so maybe you'll be seeing more of this soon. I hope you'll try it at least one time. It's good to try different ways of being with G-d, just like we like to mix up our activities with our other friends too.
Which verse in this passage is standing out to you?