Hear what the Lord says: Rise, plead your case before the mountains, and let the hills hear your voice. Hear, you mountains, the controversy of the Lord, and you enduring foundations of the earth; for the Lord has a controversy with his people, and he will contend with Israel. “O my people, what have I done to you? In what have I wearied you? Answer me! For I brought you up from the land of Egypt, and redeemed you from the house of slavery; and I sent before you Moses, Aaron, and Miriam.
“With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Like many people, I have cooked more meals over the last four months than I did before. At first, I stuck with those meals I was most familiar with cooking. When I wanted to add variety, I cracked open my cookbooks looking for new recipes to try. As an inexperienced cook, I follow directions step by step. One recipe said to add a spice “to taste.” This simple step caused a lot of internal strife. I wished there was a definite answer to how much to add. I appreciate the certainty of a recipe.
This may be the reason today’s reading resonates so much with me. I learned Micah 6:8 as a chorus sung at church. It reads like a recipe.
Step one: Do justice
Step two: Love kindness
Step three: Walk humbly with your God.
A recipe well worth repeating.
—Julia Vargas is the director of the Center for Service Learning at Rockhurst University.
You ask so little of us: to be just and kind and to follow you. Let those simple commands be my guide today and every day, so that one day I may not only do justice but recognize and oppose injustice. I pray that one day my kindness will be a gift to someone suffering because his or her own heart is closed. And most of all, Lord, I pray that people will recognize me as your follower by the way I live my life.
Let me begin today to do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with you, my God. Amen.
—The Jesuit Prayer teamPlease share the Good Word with your friends!