Today we read Isaiah 2:1-5 which ends with very familiar words “They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.”
Our reading suggests we think about when we will be entering God’s house for worship and how do we prepare for or anticipate our time in worship this season? We are asked to consider this on our calendars.
This suggestion was interesting for me since I am on the committee that prepares the decorations in the Sanctuary at Fremont and we have a weekly addition to prepare the church for the final presentation of Christmas Eve – the whole process is in anticipation of the Christmas Eve service and each week is added a new component to enhance the worship for the specific Sunday in Advent.
One comment that I found interesting from our reading today is the basic concept that the “Mountain of the Lord and the temple of the house of Jacob” will be a place for peoples of all nations to come and to learn “his ways” and “walk in his paths.” Having just returned from a pilgrimage to the Holy Land the reality of the state of Israel is far from this ideal presented in Isaiah and I pause to consider what the Middle East and the world might look like if this model were established. Is it even politically possible? That a place could exist to teach and empower the people of the world to go forth to make peace and seek justice for all people is inspiring! Let it be so!