“The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace”. Numbers 6:24-26
‘Hair and beard please’, says the customer to his barber. He doesn’t have to say anything else, just sit down and relax. He trusts him because for many years he has risen from that chair admiring his job and always left feeling like a new man. There is no waiting. The barber offers him a hearty welcome and once he starts it feels like time doesn’t really matter. The barber always says how much he likes his job and gives each customer the full treatment. He really has a passion for what he does.
This story resembles our services on Sunday in so many ways. Every Sunday, the old sinful and shabby looking man is drawn back once again. God Himself gives each one a warm and personal welcome. He always starts the conversation and when He asks, ‘how are you doing?’ we know He really means it, and by the way He treats us and speaks to us, we know how much He cares.
Like a loving Father and as if He didn’t know where we are coming from, He bids to tell Him about our shortcomings. Then, Jesus begins to say that He was consumed by His zeal, that His passion for you and for me led Him to the cross where He was stricken, smitten and afflicted for our sins and that He did it to restore us to Himself and to conform us to His own image – to be children of God.
We sit there for about an hour and in the end we realize that He did most of the talking. Then He sends us on our way with the same loving words, saying that He will provide for us and keep watch over us, that He will light our ways with the brightness of His grace; that He will never look down on us but will continue to call us when we lose our way to give us His peace. We leave feeling renewed, admiring the Lord’s passion for His job, knowing that we are the work of His hands, His new creation, and that we got the full treatment.
Did I say the customer had to pay for it? That’s because this is the free gift of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus give Your light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, and guide our feet into the way of peace. Amen.