The Rev. Canon Leonard L. Hamlin, Sr.
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets; I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one letter, not one stroke of a letter, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, will be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
Have you ever left an assignment or task incomplete? Perhaps it was a call that needed to be returned, an email that was left without a response, a conversation that was never scheduled, a broken possession or troubled heart that was never repaired or a relationship that there was never enough time to experience. We all know the frustrating thoughts and the uncomfortable feelings that linger with the reality of “unfinished business”.
In today’s reading of Matthew, Jesus speaks to those who have been listening to the Sermon on the Mount. “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” This statement has challenged readers, hearers, theologians and commentators ever since it was spoken and recorded. In the publication Meeting Jesus Again for the Time, the author states that “Jesus was not primarily a teacher of information (what to believe) or morals (how to behave), but a teacher of a way or path of transformation…from a life in the world of conventional wisdom to a life centered in God.” The Sermon on the Mount was not simply comforting words, it was a call and invitation to transformation. Our walk of faith calls us to make a commitment to growing, learning, changing and ultimately transforming. A long time ago I was told “everyone wants to change the world, but very few think of first changing themselves”. We all have unfinished business as we work to be all that we have been created for and do the work that God has purposed for us to complete. Don’t forget the great question and statement, “Have you realized that today is the tomorrow you talked about yesterday? It is your responsibility to change your life for the better.” Today is a good day to take another step!
Eternal and everlasting God, who art the Father of all mankind, as we turn aside from the hurly-burly of everyday living, may our hearts and souls, yea our very spirits, be lifted upward to Thee, for it is from Thee that all blessing cometh. Keep us ever mindful of our dependence upon Thee, for without Thee our efforts are but naught. We pray for Thy divine guidance as we travel the highways of life. We pray for more courage. We pray for more faith and above all we pray for more love. May we somehow come to understand the true meaning of Thy love as revealed to us in the life, death and resurrection of Thy son and our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ. May the Cross ever remind us of Thy great love, for greater love no man hath given. This is our supreme example, O God. May we be constrained to follow in the name and spirit of Jesus, we pray.
-Coretta Scott King: “A Public Prayer for Divine Perspective”