January 11, 2020
Scripture: Deuteronomy 6:4-7
Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise.
Thought for the Day: The Shema, this specific section of scripture, is the centerpiece of morning and evening prayers for an observant Jew. The name Shema comes from the Hebrew word for “Hear,” the first word of vs. 4. It invites us to have a singular focus on God, and we are to teach the next generation to have the same focal point in their lives. It’s interesting that the reader is commanded to keep these words within the heart, but also to recite them again and again and again. An initial reading of the passage might have someone assuming the task is to simply pass on information, but the act of teaching is actually a reinforcing for the teacher. If I am saying the words over and over to my child, they are not simply spilling off my lips and into the ears of the young one. Those words are being instilled within me whether I recognize it or not. The act of teaching through repetition often creates greater understanding and appreciation for the teacher.
Prayer: Provide me good words, O Lord Jesus. Give me a phrase full of hope that I can share with others, and in my sharing, better learn for myself its power and beauty. Amen.
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