A summons: “Come. Stand in my council.”
To His messengers and evangelists – yes, to each of His children – the summons is issued. An invitation, a command, to attend the council of the Lord.
“Come, stand in my council.”
(Council: An advisory, formally constituted, and meeting regularly, for consultation, advice, or legislation.)
The summons is often followed by a question: “Who, me?”
I’m not really wanted, nor good enough. It’s been too long.
He won’t talk to me, anyway.
I can’t find my keys. I don’t know where the building is. I think I’m allergic to the carpet in His throne room.
I have other things to do, and I really just don’t feel like going.
Persistent, the summons remains. My presence is desired by the King. My presence is required by the King.
So I raise my white flag and surrender my time.
“I’m here, Lord.”
“Lord is an ambiguous word these days,” He observes. “Are you wondering why you’re here?”
“You summoned me, Father.”
Father. What emotion two syllables can inspire! What implications they can command!
Then, in that voice I know – that voice I love, but have sometimes disobeyed – I hear an unequivocally loving response:
“I did summon you, Beloved.
“I called you to stand where my laws were made – not that you might change them, but that you might understand them and learn them by heart.
“But not for legislation alone did I invite you to my council. I want you to fully understand the sacrifice made for your disobedience of these very laws.
“Yes, beloved, stand in my council – not to receive condemnation, but to comprehend your freedom.
“And stand in my council to find the wisdom you seek. My voice is not a playlist of inspirational soundbytes to be shuffled through at random for the sake of your entertainment. My Word is not a SparkNotes summary to be skimmed as a means to know just enough. My Word is fire. My Word is alive, and it accomplishes what I intend.
“So stand in my council, sons and daughters – beloved of the Most High – for if you would stand in my council, you would know my thoughts. My thoughts about you outnumber the grains of sand.”
For who among them has stood in the council of the Lord to see and to hear his word, or who has paid attention to his word and listened?
“But if they had stood in my council, then they would have proclaimed my words to my people, and they would have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their deeds.”
Jeremiah 23:18, 22 (ESV)
Written November 2016