Hymn #2237 – As a Fire is Meant for Burning
In the Scripture reading for Sunday, November 17, St. Paul writes to the Corinthians about the mission and generosity of the church. In using harvest and planting images, he shows that God will always bless what his children sow (plant). God’s Holy Spirit, through faith, encourages our generosity, and God can multiply any good work that we extend to others. When we give to the church, we must pray that God gives us faith to believe this and trust in Him! He promises to bless our generosity, even if the process is hidden, like a seed waiting to take root and sprout.
Our prayer hymn, As a Fire is Meant for Burning, reflects on what our the church does with our gifts of time, talents, and treasure: mission and acts of mercy! Stanza 1 reminds us to show the light of Jesus in our everyday lives so that God’s name might be glorified (compare with Paul’s words from our Scripture reading: You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God.) In our generosity of giving our time and talents, God enables us to “build a bridge of care” that can extend to nations and neighbors everywhere. Stanza 2, then, reminds us that we must keep rooted in God’s Word and in seeking the Lord’s will so that we can be a light to the world. In humility, we should listen to what God has to say and pay attention to how God says he wants to shape our lives. Finally, the imagery of the harvest enters in stanza 3:
As a green bud in the springtime is a sign of life renewed,
So may we be signs of oneness ‘mid earth’s peoples, many-hued.
The richness of colors on earth – whether it be the buds of springtime or the colors of fall – remind us that God’s creation is full of many different workers for the Gospel. In the church, when we use our gifts to serve God and others, we all come together to “reflect the radiance of God’s new and glorious dawn.”
Lord, you call us to reflect the light of your son, Jesus, who poured out his life for the church. Give us grace to reflect your unending generosity in the gifts that we give. Help us to trust that you will multiply our gifts just like you multiply the fruits of the earth. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Each week Dr. Katie Moss, Organist and Director of Handbells, provides us with a short devotion and closer look at a hymn we’ll sing at the Traditions Worship at 8:45 am.
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