Friday: Psalm 50, 51, Exodus 29, Matthew 25:31-46

from Rebecca Lefroy

Psalm 50 paints an awe-inspiring, terrifying image of our creator. By his word, creation answers him - he “speaks and summons the earth” (Psalm 50v1). I’ve just returned from a trip to Arizona and was fortunate enough to visit one of earth’s greatest wonders: the Grand Canyon. I was very struck by one particular sign which informed us that 600 people have to be rescued by rangers each year, largely because they think they can easily reach the bottom of the canyon and come back up in a day, only to discover that climbing up is surprisingly harder than walking down. They are defeated by the canyon and so have to await rescue. God, however, is King over the canyon, and all of the rest of creation for that matter. He demands total respect and fear as “the world and its fullness are mine” (Ps 50v12) and, as our reading from Matthew reminds us, he will come again in glory.

And yet, at the same time, God is an incredibly personal God. He “know(s) all the birds in the field” (Ps 50v11) and he knows our hearts and deeds. In Matthew 25, we see him acknowledging the works of justice that his servants have carried out: feeding, welcoming, clothing and visiting those less fortunate, those who society might have rejected.

So, we’re left with a very strong challenge but also an encouragement: in response to our awe-inspiring creator and his personal saving love, will we take up the challenge to step out of our comfort zone and set aside our own desires in order to treat the less fortunate with dignity and love? We are told that with each action, our mighty God knows, cares and is pleased. Micah 6:8: “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”

I live in Cambridge with my husband, Ben. I still can’t get over the size of the Grand Canyon.