Archive for September 23rd, 2020

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

sunset-on-the-beach-desktop-wallpaper-sand-boats[1]Amos 9:8-9

The Sieve

But I will not destroy the house of Jacob completely, says the Lord.  For see, I have given the command to sift the house of Israel among all the nations, as one sifts with a sieve, letting no pebble fall to the ground.

The imagery in these verses recalls the Gospel metaphor of the fisherman’s net that draws up many from which the faithful will be chosen. The rest will be tossed back in to the sea to a fate that is not described for us. It also reminds us of the many farming images in which the chaff is separated from the wheat, the sheep from the goats. In this Messianic epilogue to the Amos prophecy we finally see the hope we have awaited. At last we know for certain that all is not lost. Redemption is at hand. God’s goodness and light and grace are offered to those who mourn and despair while they witness and wait.

Pebbles-on-Sand-40x30-4250[1]God says: Close your eyes and imagine the wide, vast expanse of a sandy beach that runs into rolling waves. Picture my hands holding an enormous sieve. Envision this sieve burrowing deep into the sand. See how carefully I tilt the strainer to look for the precious pebbles I know are buried in the pit of this filter. Each tiny stone is known to me. Every nugget is a gem for my crown. It is these small jewels I will seek endlessly, never losing hope that you are there, never giving up from the strain of the work, never forsaking or abandoning you, never letting even one of you drop to the ground. 

Today’s Noontime reminds us that God seeks us more ardently than we seek God. These verses recall for us the depth and breadth and length of God’s love. This final perspective that Amos opens to us brings us up from the valleys of our despair and into the heights of rejoicing. Amidst the billions of grains of sand God has an eye and an ear poised to catch each one of us in the great winnowing sieve of God’s love.

Images from: http://www.kaffefassett.com/Painting.html and http://www.iwallscreen.com/browse/beach/

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