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God’s Patience

by | Jun 30, 2021 | Patience, Persistence

And He said to me, ‘Son of man, stand on your feet, and I will speak with you.’ And as He spoke to me, the Spirit entered into me and set me on my feet, and I heard Him speaking to me. And He said to me, ‘Son of man, I send you to the people of Israel, to nations of rebels, who have rebelled against Me. They and their fathers have transgressed against Me to this very day. The descendants also are impudent and stubborn: I send you to them, and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD.’ and whether they hear or refuse to hear (for they are a rebellious house) they will know that a prophet has been among them.”‘ (Ezekiel 2:1-5 ESV)

The reading we have for today tells us about how God called Ezekiel to serve as His prophet. But it’s a very strange way to call a prophet, at least in my eyes. It isn’t at all encouraging. God says, “I send you to nations of rebels, who have rebelled against Me.” He uses words like “impudent” and “stubborn” to describe them, and He warns Ezekiel that they may just plain decide not to listen. This isn’t exactly what you want to hear, your first day on the job!

Small wonder if Ezekiel felt discouraged. But the strange thing is, for us who read this story today, the passage is full of encouragement. For what does it say? It says that our God is a God who will not give up; even when we rebel, He comes looking for us. He sends prophets and teachers to reach us. He knows we probably won’t listen, but He keeps trying anyway. There is nowhere we can go that He will not come after us, calling us home.

We see this most clearly, of course, in Jesus Christ our Savior. In Jesus, God Himself came into the world to find and save His rebellious people. Now God is not calling prophets or teachers anymore; God is coming Himself, a baby in a manger, a Man walking the roads of Palestine—a Man hanging on a cross. Now God is fighting the powers of sin and death on our behalf—and winning. And now we have become God’s freed, forgiven people, no longer rebels but beloved children—sharing in Jesus’ resurrection and everlasting life.

Prayer: Lord, thank You for never giving up on me. Amen.

This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Kari Vo.
Reprinted with permission from Lutheran Hour Ministries

Reflection Questions:
1. When you get frustrated with people, what do you do?
2. How do you keep loving someone even though they are driving you crazy?
3. How has God’s love changed your heart toward Him?