You have spoken harsh words against me, says the Lord. Yet you say, ‘How have we spoken against you?’ You have said, ‘It is vain to serve God. What do we profit by keeping his command or by going about as mourners before the Lord of hosts? Now we count the arrogant happy; evildoers not only prosper, but when they put God to the test they escape.’
Then those who revered the Lord spoke with one another. The Lord took note and listened, and a book of remembrance was written before him of those who revered the Lord and thought on his name. They shall be mine, says the Lord of hosts, my special possession on the day when I act, and I will spare them as parents spare their children who serve them.Then once more you shall see the difference between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve him.
Today is Thursday the 10 October in the 27th week of Ordinary Time.
The choir of Holy Sepulchre London sing, 'God be in my Head.'
Today’s reading is from the book of Malachi.
It isn’t always easy to love and serve God. Being a person of faith doesn’t provide us with easy answers to life’s difficult questions – it may even make them still harder to struggle with. But there’s comfort and encouragement in this passage too: God takes note and listens, God remembers us as his special possession. We belong to God.
How do you feel when you hear these words? Perhaps you have harsh questions to ask God, or reproaches to make. There are many troubling issues in our world. It’s alright to speak tough to God – all the greatest prophets did this! Being honest with God about our negative feelings and our struggles can help to process and make sense of them. Is there something challenging you want to say to God? Or does that feel too difficult – do you feel you need to be polite when talking to God?
Perhaps you need to make space for God to answer. Perhaps there are words of consolation and reassurance that God wants to offer you. Listen to the reading again and see what arises in your mind and heart.
Speaking to God ‘as one friend to another’ doesn’t mean engaging in polite conversation. It means being real with one another. What happens when you try this?