There are certain passages of the Bible – Hebrew and New Testament – that have an immediate deep impact on me when I hear them. One of those is today’s first mass reading from Isaiah. The prophet conveys to the people of Sodom and Gomorrah God’s instruction to turn away from their evil ways. After the instruction come the words that touch me so deeply.
Come now, let us set things right, says the Lord: Though your sins be like scarlet, they may become white as snow; Though they may be crimson red, they may become white as wool.
I hear those words in a warm and encouraging (almost cajoling) tone. I feel in them God’s desire for our reconciliation.
And in those words is the comforting assurance we all need from time to time: The promise that no matter what God is there to welcome us back. No matter how far we may have strayed, how down we may be feeling about our actions (or inactions), God always invites us: Come…let us set things right.
I hear these words and I experience peace and joy. I hope they have the same effect for you.