Readings for 7/7/13: Isaiah 66:10-14; Psalm 66:1-8; Galatians 6:(1-6), 7-16; Luke 10:1-11, 16-20
[Isaiah 66:10-14] Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice with her in joy, all you who mourn over her— that you may nurse and be satisfied from her consoling breast; that you may drink deeply with delight from her glorious bosom. For thus says the Lord: I will extend prosperity to her like a river, and the wealth of the nations like an overflowing stream; and you shall nurse and be carried on her arm, and dandled on her knees. As a mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you; you shall be comforted in Jerusalem. You shall see, and your heart shall rejoice; your bodies shall flourish like the grass; and it shall be known that the hand of the Lord is with his servants, and his indignation is against his enemies.
The Bible is filled with wonderfully varied and rich imagery. Unfortunately, as some groups attempt to reinforce messages of hierarchy or victory, some of those images are often pushed to the side in favor of portrayals of God as “king” or “warrior”. In this passage from Isaiah, however, we’re reminded that God is beyond gender, and, in fact, beyond any role we humans might assign to God. What a sweet image of God comforting us as our mother might—nursing us, carrying us in arms, and bouncing us on knees. Allow yourself to surrender into the embrace of God.