It is a new day

First Reading (Semi-continuous) Exodus 12:1–14
The LORD said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt: 2This month shall mark for you the beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year for you. 3Tell the whole congregation of Israel that on the tenth of this month they are to take a lamb for each family, a lamb for each household. 4If a household is too small for a whole lamb, it shall join its closest neighbor in obtaining one; the lamb shall be divided in proportion to the number of people who eat of it. 5Your lamb shall be without blemish, a year-old male; you may take it from the sheep or from the goats. 6You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of this month; then the whole assembled congregation of Israel shall slaughter it at twilight. 7They shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. 8They shall eat the lamb that same night; they shall eat it roasted over the fire with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. 9Do not eat any of it raw or boiled in water, but roasted over the fire, with its head, legs, and inner organs. 10You shall let none of it remain until the morning; anything that remains until the morning you shall burn. 11This is how you shall eat it: your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it hurriedly. It is the passover of the LORD. 12For I will pass through the land of Egypt that night, and I will strike down every firstborn in the land of Egypt, both human beings and animals; on all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments: I am the LORD. 13The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live: when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and no plague shall destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.
14This day shall be a day of remembrance for you. You shall celebrate it as a festival to the LORD; throughout your generations you shall observe it as a perpetual ordinance.

Holidays and holy days

These are days that are declared special and set apart.  Monday is Labor Day, and next week

Mayan Calendar

is September 11th.  Are these days just for sleeping in, cooking-out, and spending money?  Most of us are all too familiar with the significance of September 11th, but how many of us know the origins of Labor Day?

President Grover Cleveland proposed it and Congress unanimously voted to creat the holiday in 1884 after striking and protesting workers were killed by the  U.S. military and U.S. Marshals during the Pullman Strike.

Tragedies and accomplishments are marked on the calendar.  But the calendar declared by the political or corporate powers is not the only guide for our days.  There is a whole other calendar  at work in the world and in our lives.  It is created by the One who set the stars, planets, and moon in their orbits.  This Sunday we hear that the days and weeks are set by the Lord who hears the cries of the oppressed and does not sit still–who calls forth men and women to act.  This is how God orders the days.

Shane Claiborne in his book “Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals” calls us who are Christian “to keep God’s story at the center of our lives and calendar. And it is through the lens of Jesus that we read history and interpret whether an event is good or bad” (pg 14&15).

We order our days, our activities, what we see and believe as special not by sport (OK Packer) schedules, parades, picnics, sales and stars but by the God we meet was we worship together.

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