Ordinary Time Readings: Sunday, July 20

Reading: Genesis 6:5-8, 9-14a, 17-19, 22 and Matthew 24:36-44

  1. Take a few moments to ask God to open your heart to his abiding word, “to see wonders things” (Ps.119:18). As you read, listen intently to the story of Noah. This narrative is more than a Sunday school flannel-graph board or child’s ark and animals play-set. It is a gritty story of an awesome decision God made to destroy humanity while at the same time save a small group of people and the animals for the new beginning again (or future) of the world. What do you find most difficult or challenging about the story? Talk to God about these things. What do you find most encouraging or edifying? Receive from God’s comfort.
  2. From Genesis 6 we discover that God saw all humanity and all that was wicked. What do you suppose God noticed about the corruption? In the same text we discover God saw Noah and that Noah walked with God. What do you suppose God noticed about Noah? What do you suppose Noah noticed about God?
  3. Genesis 6 can be a difficult passage yet there seems to be a glimmer of hope. God’s saving grace. How do you hold tensions between God’s judgment toward wicked humanity and his saving favor as he sent his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to reconcile all humanity to himself in love? Have you experienced ruined in your own life? How has God redeemed, recovered, or utterly done something new in your life or heart? The ruin is a significant aspect of the story God tells about the grace of his saving redemption and new life!
  4. As you conclude your reflections, ponder the sobering words of Jesus in Matthew 24:36-44. How would you want to respond to God in these moments? What needs examined in your heart and life? What might need to change? What might need to be fostered or nurtured in your heart and/or life? Respond to God.