The lectionary selections for this week include: Isaiah 5:1-7; Psalm 80:1-2, 8-19; Hebrews 11:29-12:2 and Luke 12:49-56. Alternate selections include Jeremiah 23:23-29 and Psalm 82.

Isaiah 5:1b-2, 7My beloved had a vineyard on a very fertile hill. He dug it and cleared it of stones, and planted it with choice vines; he built a watchtower in the midst of it, and hewed out a wine vat in it; he expected it to yield grapes, but it yielded wild grapes…For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the people of Judah are his pleasant planting; he expected justice, but saw bloodshed; righteousness, but heard a cry!

It is easy to get frustrated by people who fail to meet our expectations. This scripture expresses God’s frustration with the people of Israel who appear to have squandered a wonderful gift, and yet I dare say that it is a passage that could be written by God of us, too.

Steadfast and loving God, help us never to take for granted your gifts of food, life, friends and family. Amen.

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