Good Morning. I had looked forward to greeting you all this morning from the pulpit in the church – but as you can see we find ourselves back in the wilderness, but at least now these are familiar surroundings. Because the floors of our newly restored church were not properly sealed, they were damaged in our first days back in the church. Our zeal and excitement at getting back into our old and beloved worship space has given us a perfect example of the importance of being fully prepared when the time comes to face our maker.
This morning we hear two very striking statements about the importance of being prepared to face God, and our own life’s work at the end of the age. In the Episcopal Church we are not known for preaching on the end times much – and I am not going to give you a recap of the popular christian fictions novels of the Left Behind series – the ones that describe in detail visions from Revelation and the ultimate battle between good and evil. But I do want to talk with you about the messages these scripture passages have for us, and how we might be better prepared at the end of our times here on earth to face the day of the Lord.
From The Book of Amos, we hear an excerpt of one of the lesser prophets as he speaks to the people of the nation of
Amos is reminding the people of
“Alas for you who desire the day of the Lord!” he calls out. “Is not the day of the Lord darkness, not light, and gloom with no brightness in it?”
The people have not done their task, and therefore, the day of the Lord is not something to look forward to with excitement, but rather as those who must face a teacher with no homework in hand, a missed deadline, a question that they should know the answer to, they find themselves coming up short. They are not prepared for such a day.
“Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them…Take away from me the noise of your songs… but let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever flowing stream.”