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Devotional from Pastor John Hartman, Friday, January 27, 2023

January 27, 2023 | by: Rev. John Hartman | 0 comments

Posted in: Worship

“Choose Love”

A writer received an e-mail with the subject line: “Why Am I Married?” The first story went like this: “A lady inserted an ad in the classifieds: ‘Husband Wanted’ and the next day she received a hundred letters that all said the same thing: ‘You can have mine.’” Another went like this: “When a woman steals your husband, there is no better revenge than to let her keep him.” Or this one: “A woman is incomplete until she is married. Then she is finished.” What in the world is going on here? We long for a love that lasts. We need a love that will not let go, -- and a love that will never give up. And, we yearn for a love that will not grow cold. But, we have to make the decision to choose love, and then to faithfully live out all those characteristics of love that the Apostle Paul describes in I Corinthians 13. And, to carry out Christ’s command to love God with every fiber of our being, and then our neighbor as well.   

My pastor buddy, Bill Slater, from Wake Forest, North Carolina made an interesting observation. He noticed that there’s an interesting twist in our story for this Sunday from Genesis 29. In the Hebrew text when it describes Leah’s eyes, scholars are divided on how to translate the word. Sometimes it is translated as “weak.” Verse 17 says, “Leah’s eyes were weak,” at least that is what the NIV translation says. That is not exactly meant as a compliment, either. Other times the word is translated as “lovely.” “Leah’s eyes were lovely” which is what the NRSV says.

The difference between weak and lovely is very different and dramatic. So, the Bible translators had to make a choice. Would they translate that Hebrew word as “weak” or “lovely?” Maybe the point of it all is that it can go either way. In other words, Leah’s eyes could also be translated either way by Jacob, -- especially when he looked at her. Sadly, he chose to see them as weak, but he could have seen them as lovely. When you look into the eyes of a loved one, long after you have discovered who he or she really is, let me ask you, what do you see? Do you see weak or lovely? It’s really your choice. It is really up to you.  

This Sunday, January 29, I continue my sermon series on the book of Genesis, and we will be talking about the things we do for love, involving, Jacob, Rachel, and Leah. Come join us in the sanctuary for our one and only worship service at 10:00 am on this Boy Scout Sunday, which we will also broadcast on Zoom, Facebook Live, and YouTube.  

Pastor John

(The service will be live streamed via Zoom, FaceBook and YouTube.

See links below.)

Meeting ID: 892 7983 0268 Passcode if needed: 404171