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Genesis 12:1-9, Call of Abraham

Sunday, September 16

Blessings to Be Shared

Narrative Lectionary Daily Devotions written by Kace Leetch from Clergy Stuff.

blessed to be a blessing

When God called Abram, it was for a purpose greater than the blessing of Abram. Sure, God told Abram God would “make of you a great nation,” and “make your name great.” Abram would have those things. But it wasn’t only for Abram’s sake he would gain these favors. God blessed Abram, so he would be a blessing to “all the families of the earth,” so—everyone might receive these gifts.

We live in a culture that values personal achievement. Often, that personal achievement comes at the expense of others. We climb the corporate ladder, and sometimes the only way up is by climbing over someone else. We post on social media the edited versions of ourselves to cover up the pain, hurt, and failures we don’t want others to see. We desire our blessings, our successes, our victories without considering who gets hurt along the way.

But we too, are blessed to be a blessing to others. The gifts and skills God gave us are meaningless unless we share them. Our successes mean nothing unless we use them to help others succeed. What we post online and off is a lie unless we share our most authentic selves, which can give others permission to be their most authentic selves. We can walk this life’s journey together, supporting each other, blessing each other.

As soon as God proclaimed his promise to Abram, God sent Abram on a journey. He brought along his family and all that he had acquired and traveled in stages across the countryside. When they stopped to camp and worship, Abram built an altar as a remembrance of what God had promised and what God was going to do. Abram left markers of God’s goodness all across the land.

We can use the gifts God has given us to leave markers of God’s goodness all across the lands we travel—from the people we encounter daily, to those we connect with virtually from all over the world. Our words and actions are reflections of who God has created us to be. We can leave markers of God’s goodness every time we speak, act, listen, post, tweet, and interact. We too can be blessed to be a blessing.

Narrative Lectionary Text: Genesis 12:1-9

Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

So Abram went, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. Abram took his wife Sarai and his brother’s son Lot, and all the possessions that they had gathered, and the persons whom they had acquired in Haran; and they set forth to go to the land of Canaan. When they had come to the land of Canaan,

Abram passed through the land to the place at Shechem, to the oak of Moreh. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. Then the Lordappeared to Abram, and said, “To your offspring I will give this land.” So he built there an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him. From there he moved on to the hill country on the east of Bethel, and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east; and there he built an altar to the Lord and invoked the name of the Lord. And Abram journeyed on by stages toward the Negeb.

Earlier Event: September 15
Genesis 11:27-32, Descendants of Terah