January 23

Micah 6:1-5

“O my people, what have I done to you? In what have I wearied you? Answer me!” vs. 3

The prophet Micah was very aware that Israel had not been acting in a way that was pleasing to the Lord. In this passage he imagines the Lord taking the controversy to the mountains and, in a court-like setting, presenting the case. In Micah’s vision the Lord sounds like a parent scolding beloved children. Some of us recognize the tone of the confrontation. We’ve done the same thing: beside ourselves with anger we recount all the wonderful things we’ve done for this ungrateful child. And when the child stands silent with head bowed we demand a response. “Answer me!” we shout, and because there is no adequate answer, the conversation ends. The hope in such situations is that there would be a change in behavior, and that’s likely what Micah hoped would happen with Israel. There are times in our lives when we need challenges from those who love us. Even when we live in Christ and trust in the forgiving word of Jesus, there will be times when chastising words are exactly what we need to hear. Sometimes our behaviors are reprehensible and only an “Answer me!” demand can pierce our stubborn hearts. It’s important though to remember that in Christ such exchanges take place in a context of love, and the last word will always be “I love you!”

Thought for the Day: How has the “answer me” tactic worked for me?

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