Celebrating Deuteronomy: God in the Living Room

It is starting to sink in.

I’ve come a long way on this blog. Farther than I thought I would. I made it through Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. I never thought I would not only read through those books, but see so much in them and have so much fun with them!

But I’ll be honest, I am finding it difficult to know how to celebrate. Life is busy. Things need to happen. It is hard enough trying to keep up with writing a new post each day. Setting aside time to creatively celebrate the Book of Deuteronomy feels really hard.

But there is something that feels right about that.

The laws in these books, with the exception of the festivals, were meant to be lived out in the midst of real life. There aren’t a whole lot of special ceremonies. Sure, when the people finally get into the land, there is going to be some major partying, but most of these laws take place in your home on a tuesday night when you are having dinner with your family.

They are happening on your way to work. Or school (or the ancient Hebrew equivalent thereof). Or on your way home.

That is why I loved Deuteronomy 6

God wants to be a part of his peoples’ lives. All of their lives. In everything they do and everywhere they go there is a chance to remember and encounter the Living God who brought them out of Egypt and into a land flowing with milk and honey.

This God is not distant and demanding of arbitrary things. He wants goodness and blessing to happen to his people. He wants them to learn to love one another and treat each other well. And this is how he will reveal himself to the nations around them.

Maybe the best way to celebrate the completion of the Torah is to let the laws, commands, and statutes of God work their way into every conversation I have.

Like the fight I had with my wife this afternoon. 

We hurt each other today. It was bad.

But somehow, by the grace of God, as we both sat on the floor (because her back is hurting and chairs are uncomfortable), feeling hurt and misunderstood by the other, we were able to set aside our pain long enough to listen to one another. We let go of the need to be right and get our way. We dropped our stones. We turned and faced each other rather than walking away. We made the effort to understand.

There were tears. From both of us. And I only cry in movies (don’t even get me started on “Finding Nemo!”) and episodes of LOST where Jack has to try get Charlie’s heart started again by punching him in the chest. Ugh.

But it was a beautiful moment where our faith made itself real in our living room. God showed up and restored us. He was there. Just like he was in the wilderness.

God with us

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7 responses

  1. This is so true. Thank you for your bare honesty also! this is the part I used to miss as a christian and I think many do. We say ‘relationship’ all the time but then we don’t see God as relational – in the middle of it all – with us!

    God has also shown me this through my marriage mostly(but there is a LONG story)! And I am so thankful for the institute of marriage as an example(Eph 5) to us of our relationship with Him(except only one side fights in that relationship! :P)

    I have been pretty much homebound for over a year now with some hard to deal with medical/mental issues! but in my husbands commitment to me and to the Lord(sacrificially), God brought a depth of understanding to both of us about HIS sacrificial love…gave us a new undersatdning of leaning on His strength, a new revelation of Grace and so much more… ultimately He got in the trenches with us and alongside taking this low time to read the Bible straight through as I have shared before…it has blown open God for me, I know Him like never before, I understand him in a fresh way, I love Him in a more true way and I recieve His love in a much more real way also… and my husband too! but it was in the fights, the struggles, the dead-ends(as we thought they were) and so on.

    I pray for you both right now and thank the Lord that as you are open with each other and Him as you have been even with us(I think its key to be painfully honest with God) that He will continue not just to restore the moment but He will cause a deeper relationship with you both and with HIM and that there will be a tightening of that 3way relationship.

    a three stranded chord is not easily broken(Ecc 4) be richly blessed through this current curve however quick or long it is!!

  2. Tremendous, Ben! Thanks for your vulnerability and honesty! Stopping long enough to listen makes all the difference. Never stop giving each other grace, and covering one another with forgiveness.

  3. Excited to take the next step in this journey! Are you going to do duplicate material twice (like stuff from Kings that is in Chronicles)? Either way, I love that you’ve stuck out this journey so far. You’re the perfect guy for the job!

  4. That’s a powerful post Ben – thanks for sharing. My wife and I will celebrate 17 years of marriage later this month and have had our share of floor-sitting-mutual cries. I believe the hard times promote intimacy like nothing else…thanks again for the thoughts and reminder!

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