The Tapestry of Scripture

How about that first reading? “Pretty good stuff, huh? Ready for a pop quiz? Any volunteers?” About this time everyone begins to look down in the hopes that if we don’t make eye contact I won’t call on them. The first reading was from the Book of Nehemiah – just the title tells you a lot – fills in the who, what, when and where of the reading we just heard. It is the people of Jerusalem, returned from Exile in Babylon some 40 years after the destruction of Jerusalem and its beloved Temple. The people are rebuilding as best they can. Life is hard. The neighbors are making it difficult. The complaints and grumbling are many. What began in joy is wilting in the hot sun of their reality. They are forgetting who they are and to whom they belong.  And so they are all brought together in one place. The sequence of events that unfold are this: Continue reading