A Daily Dose of Good News
Tuesday, August 31, 2021
Additionally, if you’d like to talk about this Daily Dose of Good News further, or previous ones, have questions, or additional thoughts, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to interactively engage with you about them.
Good morning! It is August 31 and today our Daily Dose of Good News is from Psalm 106: 1-6, 13-23, and 47-48.
Praise the Lord!
O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever.
Who can utter the mighty doings of the Lord,
or declare all his praise?
Happy are those who observe justice,
who do righteousness at all times.
Remember me, O Lord, when you show favor to your people;
help me when you deliver them;
that I may see the prosperity of your chosen ones,
that I may rejoice in the gladness of your nation,
that I may glory in your heritage.
Both we and our ancestors have sinned;
we have committed iniquity, have done wickedly.
But they soon forgot his works;
they did not wait for his counsel.
But they had a wanton craving in the wilderness,
and put God to the test in the desert;
he gave them what they asked,
but sent a wasting disease among them.
They were jealous of Moses in the camp,
and of Aaron, the holy one of the Lord.
The earth opened and swallowed up Dathan,
and covered the faction of Abiram.
Fire also broke out in their company;
the flame burned up the wicked.
They made a calf at Horeb
and worshiped a cast image.
They exchanged the glory of God[d]
for the image of an ox that eats grass.
They forgot God, their Savior,
who had done great things in Egypt,
wondrous works in the land of Ham,
and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.[e]
Therefore he said he would destroy them—
had not Moses, his chosen one,
stood in the breach before him,
to turn away his wrath from destroying them.
Save us, O Lord our God,
and gather us from among the nations,
that we may give thanks to your holy name
and glory in your praise.
Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,
from everlasting to everlasting.
And let all the people say, “Amen.”
Praise the Lord!
Here ends the reading.
Now as I reflected upon this, I thought of 5 things we can do today- which is kind of a lot! (Laughs). But I thought: ‘okay, it’s early in the week. Let’s be energetic about this. Let’s get after this’. So in considering 5 things, one of the pieces of this text (verse 6), talks about how “both we and our ancestors have sinned”. I wondered if you have ever considered confessing the sins of your ancestors? That might be a parent or a grandparent or maybe even ancestors you don’t specifically know. We all have sin in our families. One of the things that it talks about somewhere else in the Bible (I don’t remember exactly where at this moment, but I could google it, I guess), is about how sin can carry from generation to generation. So I think it’s helpful to take some time today and just confess some sins of your ancestors. Some of those you may specifically know. Some of those you may be able to guess about. I think that would be an interesting and enlightening task to do today.
The second piece is: in this text, lots of places where they sin are associated with a place. So for example, “they had a wanton craving in the wilderness, and put God to the test in the desert, they were jealous of Moses in the camp, they made a calf at Horeb.” I think that’s another interesting way to think about our sin. Can we pinpoint our sin to a place? So maybe what is your sin that you have done in the workplace? What is your sin that you have done at home? What is your sin that you did at school? Maybe these vary in time as well. What is the sin that you did when you lived elsewhere? So I think that’s a way of taking care of some of the vagueness of sin, some of the largeness of sin, and getting more specific and helping us pinpoint that. So that we can confess it. Because there probably are times- that at different places in our lives- different sins have been easier to come to the surface for us. So that’s a second thing for you to consider today.
The third thing is: to consider how foolish we are and what we worship. I thought that line was powerful about: “they made a calf at Horeb and they exchanged the glory of God the image of an ox that eats grass”. So to consider how foolish our sins are. What is it that we worship that’s so meaningless? That is so devoid of any power at all and yet we worship it?
The fourth thing to consider is back in verse 13: the people soon forgetting God’s works and not waiting for God’s counsel. So for you to consider today: where do you need to sit and wait for God’s counsel? And not run ahead, and not get your own idea about something and just take off with it. But where do you need to sit and wait to hear God’s counsel, to seek God’s counsel, before you take action?
And the final, fifth thing that I want you just to soak in today… is this passage in verse 23, about God said he would destroy the people, had not Moses his Chosen One stood in the breach before him to turn away his wrath from destroying them. I’ve never thought of that exactly in that way before of: Moses standing in the breach for the people of Israel. Just like Jesus stood in the breach for all of us. When Jesus was crucified and resurrected for our sins, so that we didn’t receive wrath for our sinfulness but instead resurrection life and being in the glory of God with God forever. So a happy thing to celebrate today is Jesus standing in the breach for us and how that makes our lives so much more magnificent.
Alright, have a great day everybody! Don’t get exhausted from all those tasks! (Laughs). You could pick them, I guess. You could pick one or two, but I’d like to encourage you to be an overachiever and think about all five. Have a great day everybody. Bye-bye.