Sunday, March 20, 2022
A Gift, Not a Duty
In Jesus’ day, what his disciples have done here is not permitted on the Sabbath. We might find that odd today as all they do is “to pick some heads of grain, rub them in their hand and eat the kernels…,” as v. 1 tells us. Nonetheless, their actions still violate the Law quite clearly as what they are doing is considered “work.”
What does Jesus do in the midst of this setting aside of the Law? He offers us a wonderful contrast here between gift and duty, humanity and law.
Still today, we create certain “laws,” if you will, by labeling some things quite necessary if we are to call ourselves dutiful Christians. As soon as we begin to see certain activities as our “duty,” not a gift, we lose what God intended them to be.
For example, at times we label worship a duty, that which must be embraced weekly without fail in order for us to be faithful disciples. When we do that, we lose the meaning and joy. Conversely, when we see worship as God intended it to be – a wonderful gift – then we long to worship each week with God and one another.
Whether it is worshipping our God, or following Jesus, or serving our neighbor – all of it is a gift, not a duty, and must be seen in that way if we are to embrace the life God desires for us. So…how do you see, or label, such things? Strive to look at all that is a part of your faith journey as a gift, never duty.
Prayer: Loving God, may we never boil our faith down to duty or requirement but see it as the gift it is. Amen.