The reading from Genesis this morning gives us an example of the honest and direct conversations that Abram (and Abraham, as he is to become) has with God. He is able to express his deepest hope and desire (and have a little moan at the same time!). Abram’s trust in God’s response is “reckoned … as righteousness”.
Notice that Abram doesn’t do or try to prove anything to God, nor promise anything in return. He simply believes and trusts and that is enough to secure his citizenship in heaven (to use St Paul’s phrase) – notwithstanding the very earthly focus of his desires.
This week we have been urged to think deeply about what it means to be a citizen (“subject”, actually) in this nation and how (or whether) that is compatible with membership of a wider European family – and the varied answers to such deliberations will feature heavily in the press between now and June. As the debate rages, perhaps we could challenge ourselves to think what our own reaction to it says about our deepest desires and hopes?
What is it we really want for ourselves, our community … our parish? Does that reveal us as citizens of heaven, or are we still in need of Jesus’ transforming power? Do we have the confidence to speak honestly to God about it? And, will we trust in God’s response?