I hope this day finds you and your family well. I invite you to take a few moments with me to read and reflect upon today’s scripture selection — and to carry these thoughts with you into your day.
Today’s Scripture: Exodus 35:20-35
Gifts for building the dwelling
20 The whole Israelite community left Moses. 21 Everyone who was excited and eager to participate brought the Lord’s gift offerings to be used for building the meeting tent and all its furnishings and for the holy clothes. 22 Both men and women came forward. Everyone who was eager to participate brought pins, earrings, rings, and necklaces, all sorts of gold objects. Everyone raised an uplifted offering of gold to the Lord. 23 And everyone who had blue or purple or deep red yarn or fine linen or goats’ hair or rams’ skins dyed red or beaded leather brought them. 24 Everyone who could make a gift offering of silver or copper brought it as the Lord’s gift offering. Everyone who had acacia wood that could be used in any kind of building work brought it. 25 All the skilled women spun cloth with their hands, and brought what they had spun in blue and purple and deep red yarns and fine linen. 26 All the women who were eager to use their skill spun the goats’ hair. 27 The chiefs brought gemstones and gems to be set in the priest’s vest and the chest pendant, 28 spices and oil for light and for the anointing oil, and for the sweet-smelling incense. 29 All the Israelite men and women who were eager to contribute something for the work that the Lord had commanded Moses to do brought it as a spontaneous gift to the Lord.
Moses introduces Bezalel and Oholiab
30 Then Moses said to the Israelites: “Look, the Lord has chosen Bezalel, Uri’s son and Hur’s grandson from the tribe of Judah. 31 The Lord has filled him with the divine spirit that will give him skill, ability, and knowledge for every kind of work. 32 He will be able to create designs, do metalwork in gold, silver, and copper, 33 cut stones for setting, carve wood, do every kind of creative work, 34 and have the ability to teach others. Both he and Oholiab, Ahisamach’s son from the tribe of Dan, 35 have been given the skill to do every kind of work done by a gem cutter or a designer or a needleworker in blue, purple, and deep red yarns and in fine linen or a weaver or anyone else doing work or creating designs.
Tim’s Devotional Reflection for Today
While not the most familiar passage in the Bible, today’s reading from Exodus is a beautiful passage. It tells the story of the building of the tabernacle that would travel with the people wherever they dwelt.
It is also a kind of celebration of artistry, use of fine materials, and various skills. It is a celebration of what is good and beautiful and useful. It is a celebration of a community contributing to and working for a common goal.
Not everyone pitched in, however.
The ones who did were “everyone whose heart was stirred, and everyone whose spirit was willing.” Stirred hearts and willing spirits — that’s the key to accomplishing what God calls us to do in our time and place.
How about you? Is your heart stirred — and is your spirit willing to give and serve?
Thank you for sharing this early moment of your day with me, with God, and with the words and reflections I hope you will carry with you throughout the coming day and night.
Grace and Peace,
Dr. Tim Bruster