We have all been given a calling! We have all been given a purpose! We have all been created on purpose with purpose for a purpose! When God gives us words to speak, we need to speak them! When God gives us instructions to follow, we need to follow them! When God gives us something to pass along, we need to share! We are accountable to doing what God has asked us to do! If we don’t do it and it is to the detriment of someone else, we will be held accountable because we knew, we could have done something about it, and we didn’t! As I start this day and consider how important it is for us to answer the call, as I start this day and consider how we might not be able to help everyone, we can’t give up but rather we need to be God’s hand extended to the one.
Consider this story about a star fish which is part of the RFKC message which speaks to the Starfish Story by Loren Eiseley. Here is a video representation…
That’s right, if we look at everything and try to do everything, it could be overwhelming and might even stop you from doing anything. The reality is that we are at such a place for such a time as this and what will you do to be a hand extended, a shoulder to lean on, an arm that embraces, to the people around you because “to that one, it made a difference” will be what is said and remembered. Yes, even that little bit you can help will make a difference! What is holding you back? What is keeping you from making a difference? It will make a difference to that one!
Today’s reading speaks to someone else who received a call and that God put others in his path and gave him something to do.
EZEKIEL’S FIRST VISION OF GOD (1.1—7.27)
1On the fifth day of the fourth month of the thirtieth year, I, Ezekiel the priest, son of Buzi, was living with the Jewish exiles by the Chebar River in Babylonia. The sky opened, and I saw a vision of God. ( 2It was the fifth year since King Jehoiachin had been taken into exile.) 3There in Babylonia beside the Chebar River, I heard the Lord speak to me, and I felt his power.
4I looked up and saw a windstorm coming from the north. Lightning was flashing from a huge cloud, and the sky around it was glowing. Where the lightning was flashing, something shone like bronze. 5At the center of the storm I saw what looked like four living creatures in human form, 6but each of them had four faces and four wings. 7Their legs were straight, and they had hoofs like those of a bull. They shone like polished bronze. 8In addition to their four faces and four wings, they each had four human hands, one under each wing. 9Two wings of each creature were spread out so that the creatures formed a square, with their wing tips touching. When they moved, they moved as a group without turning their bodies.
10Each living creature had four different faces: a human face in front, a lion’s face at the right, a bull’s face at the left, and an eagle’s face at the back. 11Two wings of each creature were raised so that they touched the tips of the wings of the creatures next to it, and their other two wings were folded against their bodies. 12Each creature faced all four directions, and so the group could go wherever they wished, without having to turn.
13Among the creatures there was something that looked like a blazing torch, constantly moving. The fire would blaze up and shoot out flashes of lightning. 14The creatures themselves darted back and forth with the speed of lightning.
15As I was looking at the four creatures I saw four wheels touching the ground, one beside each of them. 16All four wheels were alike; each one shone like a precious stone, and each had another wheel intersecting it at right angles, 17so that the wheels could move in any of the four directions. 18The rims of the wheels were covered with eyes. 19Whenever the creatures moved, the wheels moved with them, and if the creatures rose up from the earth, so did the wheels. 20The creatures went wherever they wished, and the wheels did exactly what the creatures did, because the creatures controlled them. 21So every time the creatures moved or stopped or rose in the air, the wheels did exactly the same.
22Above the heads of the creatures there was something that looked like a dome made of dazzling crystal. 23There under the dome stood the creatures, each stretching out two wings toward the ones next to it and covering its body with the other two wings. 24I heard the noise their wings made in flight; it sounded like the roar of the sea, like the noise of a huge army, like the voice of Almighty God. When they stopped flying, they folded their wings, 25but there was still a sound coming from above the dome over their heads.
26Above the dome there was something that looked like a throne made of sapphire, and sitting on the throne was a figure that looked like a human being. 27The figure seemed to be shining like bronze in the middle of a fire. It shone all over with a bright light 28that had in it all the colors of the rainbow. This was the dazzling light which shows the presence of the Lord.
God Calls Ezekiel to Be a Prophet
When I saw this, I fell face downward on the ground. Then I heard a voice
–from Ezekiel 1
1saying, “Mortal man, stand up. I want to talk to you.” 2While the voice was speaking, God’s spirit entered me and raised me to my feet, and I heard the voice continue, 3“Mortal man, I am sending you to the people of Israel. They have rebelled and turned against me and are still rebels, just as their ancestors were. 4They are stubborn and do not respect me, so I am sending you to tell them what I, the Sovereign Lord, am saying to them. 5Whether those rebels listen to you or not, they will know that a prophet has been among them. 6“But you, mortal man, must not be afraid of them or of anything they say. They will defy and despise you; it will be like living among scorpions. Still, don’t be afraid of those rebels or of anything they say. 7You will tell them whatever I tell you to say, whether they listen or not. Remember what rebels they are. 8“Mortal man, listen to what I tell you. Don’t be rebellious like them. Open your mouth and eat what I am going to give you.” 9I saw a hand reaching out toward me, and it was holding a scroll. 10The hand unrolled the scroll, and I saw that there was writing on both sides—cries of grief were written there, and wails and groans.
–from Ezekiel 2
1God said, “Mortal man, eat this scroll; then go and speak to the people of Israel.”
2So I opened my mouth, and he gave me the scroll to eat. 3He said, “Mortal man, eat this scroll that I give you; fill your stomach with it.” I ate it, and it tasted as sweet as honey. 4Then God said, “Mortal man, go to the people of Israel and say to them whatever I tell you to say. 5I am not sending you to a nation that speaks a difficult foreign language, but to the Israelites. 6If I sent you to great nations that spoke difficult languages you didn’t understand, they would listen to you. 7But none of the people of Israel will be willing to listen; they will not even listen to me. All of them are stubborn and defiant. 8Now I will make you as stubborn and as tough as they are. 9I will make you as firm as a rock, as hard as a diamond; don’t be afraid of those rebels.” 10God continued, “Mortal man, pay close attention and remember everything I tell you. 11Then go to the people of your nation who are in exile and tell them what I, the Sovereign Lord, am saying to them, whether they pay attention to you or not.” 12Then God’s spirit lifted me up, and I heard behind me the loud roar of a voice that said, “Praise the glory of the Lord in heaven above!” 13I heard the wings of the creatures beating together in the air, and the noise of the wheels, as loud as an earthquake. 14The power of the Lord came on me with great force, and as his spirit carried me off, I felt bitter and angry. 15So I came to Tel Abib beside the Chebar River, where the exiles were living, and for seven days I stayed there, overcome by what I had seen and heard.
The Lord Appoints Ezekiel as a Lookout
16After the seven days had passed, the Lord spoke to me. 17“Mortal man,” he said, “I am making you a lookout for the nation of Israel. You will pass on to them the warnings I give you. 18If I announce that someone evil is going to die but you do not warn him to change his ways so that he can save his life, he will die, still a sinner, but I will hold you responsible for his death. 19If you do warn an evil man and he doesn’t stop sinning, he will die, still a sinner, but your life will be spared. 20“If someone truly good starts doing evil and I put him in a dangerous situation, he will die if you do not warn him. He will die because of his sins—I will not remember the good he did—and I will hold you responsible for his death. 21If you do warn a good man not to sin and he listens to you and doesn’t sin, he will stay alive, and your life will also be spared.”
Ezekiel Will Be Unable to Talk
22I felt the powerful presence of the Lord and heard him say to me, “Get up and go out into the valley. I will talk to you there.” 23So I went out into the valley, and there I saw the glory of the Lord, just as I had seen it beside the Chebar River. I fell face downward on the ground, 24but God’s spirit entered me and raised me to my feet. The Lord said to me, “Go home and shut yourself up in the house. 25You will be tied with ropes, mortal man, and you will not be able to go out in public. 26I will paralyze your tongue so that you won’t be able to warn these rebellious people. 27Then, when I speak to you again and give you back the power of speech, you will tell them what I, the Sovereign Lord, am saying. Some of them will listen, but some will ignore you, for they are a nation of rebels.”
–from Ezekiel 3