All in the Family

Today’s scripture selection: Matthew 1-2

Key verse: Matthew 2:6

In just a few weeks I will be officially over the hill, a little over half-a-century old. (Actually, by six years, but who’s counting?)  Still, I can remember what it was like to be a young kid, sitting on the carpet in my grandparent’s home in Ohio, watching BONANZA and enjoying an “Eskimo Pie”.  Back in those days I didn’t have any responsibilities.  I had few worries.  I wasn’t a husband or a pastor or a citizen.  I was just a kid.  I was Osie and Pappy’s grandson; Gene and June’s little boy; Chuck’s younger brother.  But already the die was cast.  I was soon to be a member of God’s kingdom – baptized by my own father, himself a minister.  And, though I didn’t know it then, that first critically important choice would richly color my life forever more.

In Matthew’s gospel we learn that there “were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Christ.”  Matthew, writing to a Jewish audience, wanted to make a point.  The Savior was a descendant of Abraham.  And, while we might find that long genealogy in chapter one tedious, it says a lot.  It reminds us that, over thousands of years, God was at work, carefully preparing to rescue His people through the ordinary – and sometimes extraordinary lives of ordinary people.

He still does that.  God reaches out to us in both ordinary and extraordinary ways to reminds us of one thing – how much He loves us.  And we, one life at a time, can be part of that redemptive story.  You are only one person in a vast sea of humanity.  But you are important.  You are part of a story, made up of many generations.  You have unique gifts and gifts that are only yours to share.  You can be part of God’s redemptive story, both as recipient and giver.  You are more than somebody’s kid; somebody’s brother or sister; somebody’s employee or employer; somebody’s mom or dad or grandparent.  You are God’s own beloved.  Enjoy the journey and make it count – one changed life at a time.

Prayer:  Lord, thank you for lovingly calling me to be part of your family.  Show me how to live out my destiny according to your will.  Help me to be thankful for each and every opportunity to live my life fully and abundantly.  In Jesus’ holy name, AMEN.