September 3, 2019
Sharing Our Story
The book of Nehemiah tells the story of the newly returned Israelites from exile. The fragile community suffers under the Greek occupation of their ancestral home, leading to internal strife and division. Governor Nehemiah seeks to restore cultural unity among the people by affirming their identity as chosen by God and reminding them of God’s faithfulness. In these verses, the priest and scribe Ezra leads the people in a prayer of remembrance, recounting all the amazing things God has done for them throughout history.
Humans have a short memory, don’t we? We sometimes experience adversity and suddenly forget God’s powerful acts of mercy and justice in our lives, thus forgetting how we are called to behave as God’s people. Perhaps that’s why we retell our faith story every week in worship. Through affirming our faith, sharing in the sacraments, and hearing the story of God’s love for us repeated each week, we are reminded of who and whose we are. Ezra’s prayer of remembrance leads the people to renewed covenant living and reconciliation. May our own worship lead us to the same as we seek to live in covenant with one another.
QUESTIONS FOR THE FIELD
- Outside of worship, what are some other occasions when story-telling is important to your family or community?
- Recall a time when God acted powerfully in your life. Can you incorporate that story into your life’s narrative, recalling it the next time you are experiencing doubt or conflict?
FAMILY FIELD TALK
- What are some of your favorite family stories to tell? How do these stories make you feel about the people in your family?
God, we thank you for the gift of story-telling as a way to remember your unending goodness. Thank you for revealing yourself in our traditions as we seek to be more like Jesus. Remind us of your mighty acts, and turn us toward one another in times of conflict. Amen.