The Image of God and His People You Will Never Forget (though you might want to!)
Devotional Thought of the Day:
1 This is what the LORD said to me: “Go and buy a linen loincloth and put it on, but do not wash it.” 2 So I bought the loincloth as the LORD directed me, and I put it on. 3 Then the LORD gave me another message: 4 “Take the linen loincloth you are wearing, and go to the Euphrates River. Hide it there in a hole in the rocks.” 5 So I went and hid it by the Euphrates as the LORD had instructed me. 6 A long time afterward the LORD said to me, “Go back to the Euphrates and get the loincloth I told you to hide there.” 7 So I went to the Euphrates and dug it out of the hole where I had hidden it. But now it was rotting and falling apart. The loincloth was good for nothing. 8 Then I received this message from the LORD: 9 “This is what the LORD says: This shows how I will rot away the pride of Judah and Jerusalem. 10 These wicked people refuse to listen to me. They stubbornly follow their own desires and worship other gods. Therefore, they will become like this loincloth—good for nothing! 11 As a loincloth clings to a man’s waist, so I created Judah and Israel to cling to me, says the LORD. They were to be my people, my pride, my glory—an honor to my name. But they would not listen to me. Jeremiah 13:1-11 (NLT)
538 There he is: King of Kings and Lord of Lords, hidden in the bread. To this extreme has he humbled himself for love of you. (1)
There are many images in scripture used to describe the close, intimate relationship between God and His people. He is the Good Shepherd who carries his lost sheep home, the Father who runs to meet His prodigal son, The Bridegroom awaiting His perfect spotless Bride. We are His temple, His dwelling place, His home…
And then there is this one
God and His people, who are pictured as… His underwear? (that’s what a loincloth is…)
I mean, that is how close God wants His people to be to Him? Not only that, He wants us to be like clingy underwear?
(which could stand for too much information or too much intimacy!)
It is an odd picture to be sure, this picture that the prophet Jeremiah puts on paper, inspired by the Holy Spirit. But it drives the point home in a way we cannot deny.
God wants His people close to Him, Closer than anything else.
Yet too often, we don’t want to be that close to Him, we don’t even want to be in his bureau. We want to keep God at just the proper distance. Close enough to rescue us when we sin, but not so close that His presence causes us to move with Him, We want to have our sins forgiven, but not have to spend time clinging to Him, having our lives wrapped around His life, going where He wants to go.
He wants us that close. He wants to be that involved in our lives, and we to be that involved in His. For even as the prophet Jeremiah pictures us as God’s clothes, Paul will picture God wrapping Himself around us
26 It is through faith that all of you are God’s children in union with Christ Jesus. 27 You were baptized into union with Christ, and now you are clothed, so to speak, with the life of Christ himself. Galatians 3:26-27 (TEV)
This intimacy is not just pictured, but occurs at a deeper level, as we take Christ’s Body and Blood into us, in the Lord’s Supper, where Christ hides Himself, as St. Josemaria tells us, that we can know His love.
This intimate relationship is why the Father sent Jesus to live among us, to die for us, to restore us to the very ideal that God created us to be…. HIs people, His pride, His glory, and that we can bring Honor to His name.
Remember, the Lord is with you!
And if you need help remember how close… remember this picture from Jeremiah!
(1) Escriva, Josemaria (2010-11-02). The Way (Kindle Locations 1299-1301). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.
Posted on June 12, 2015, in Devotions, The Way and tagged Abiding in Christ, apostolate, baptism, cHesed, healing, intimacy with God, life with God, practicing the presence of God. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.