Posted by: pmarkrobb | January 3, 2013

today matters

Do we serve an intentional God?  Is God involved in the details of a single person on a single day?  Does every day really matter?  I wish you could feel the weight and spirit of my “Yes, Yes and Yes!” answers to those very real questions.

Just two short days ago we tore off the last month on the 2012 calendar, and hung a fresh new one.  The parallels to the new beginnings that God’s grace and mercy gift us are obvious, but is January 1st just another day?  I had a close friend of mine text me something to that effect this year on New Year’s day.  It was in response to me texting that I must be getting old, as I didn’t make it to midnight to see the ball drop the night before.  “Maybe you’re getting wiser”, he said, “It’s just another day.”  I remembered stopping for a second and feeling a bit of remorse when I read those four finishing words.  I don’t know that he meant it to have a tone of defeat, but I couldn’t help thinking that there are people who genuinely feel that way.  People on one end of the scale who have been touched by deep tragedy and are lost in its aftermath.  People who have been repeatedly buffeted with the seemingly innocent daily pressures of work and family to the point where they are completely exhausted and their spirit has been broken.  People who have been let down or abandoned by others they trusted, or who said that they loved them.  To these people, January 1st may genuinely be just another day … just another day they cannot cope with, and one where God feels distant or non-existent.

I grieve and pray for those people, and want more than anything to offer them hope.  Hope in the story that we are reading right now as we journey chronologically through the Bible.  Hope in the midst of a story that seems completely devoid of it (like the lives or circumstances of those who feel God is distant or non-existent).  Hope in the deliverance and redemption that God offers every single day in the lives of individual people just like them.

I wrote a post just a couple of months ago that seemed so right to revisit and be reminded of in the context of our reading and our theme for this year … Every Day Matters.

A close study of scripture and the history of the Jewish nation shows 7 major events directly connected with God’s deliverance and redemption that happened on the very same calendar date … Nisan 17.  The events begin with the story of Noah.  And while the naming of the month in the scriptural account is different, the ark coming to rest on dry ground on the peak of Mt. Ararat happened on the very same date in the calendar year as six others (God reoriented the Jewish calendar after Israel’s deliverance from slavery in Egypt to emphasize its importance).

Israel crossed the Red Sea … on Nisan 17.  The first day of seven that the nation walked around the city of Jericho, the day that the Lord promised to deliver Jericho into Joshua’s hands was … Nisan 17.  Sticking with Joshua, Nisan 17 is the first day that the nation eats of the first fruits of the Promised Land.  On Nisan 16, God’s provision of manna ended and they ate anew on the 17th.  Hezekiah begins consecrating the temple on Nisan 1.  The work lasts 16 days.  On the 17th, sacrifices begin again in the temple.  Haman was hanged on Nisan 17; a pivotal event in the story of deliverance for the people of Israel because of Queen Esther.

And last and also greatest, is the seventh and final event that happen on this blessed and intentional day on the Jewish calendar … Our Savior rose on Nisan 17.  Deliverance for all of humanity, for all time happened that exact calendar date.

A mathematician calculated the odds of all these events happening on the exact same calendar date.  The odds were 783,864,876,960,000,000:1.  That’s one in 783 quadrillion, 864 trillion, 876 Billion, 960 Million!  My point when I wrote on this previously was, when God is involved, the odds are 1:1.

In being reminded of this as I read the story of the Flood this week, I was overwhelmed with the words of our 2013 journey theme … Every Day Matters.  And the initial impulse of defeat in the words “just another day” was completely washed away in the remembrance of God’s redemptive work and the intention of Nisan 17.  In the midst of a story that appears completely hopeless, God steps in on a single day and begins a strand of intentional deliverance and redemption.   One that was authored before time began, and that has its possibility in each one of the numbered days he blesses us with.  No matter who you are, or where you are today, today matters … every day matters; and He is ever near in each and every one of them.

yeam2012


Responses

  1. I have committed myself with God’s help to read my bible everyday following your guide. I have really enjoyed rereading about Noah’s Ark and all about the flood once again. Thanks for your guidance.

    Ana

    PS I also loved reading about the garage sale. What a great story. Thanks for sharing.


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