Summer always makes me think of summer camp. I can’t help but get lost in memories of hiking through redwoods, endless days of being at the pool, hobo-packs for dinner, s’mores and singing round the campfire.
Many of the Bible verses I know and love, I learned singing around the campfire. Micah 6:8 is still one of my favorite verses. Before I knew what the words of the prophet Micah meant they were laced into my heart. “God has shown you, O people, what is good. And what does the LORD
require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” The words of the prophet Micah spoke loudly to the people of Israel and they continue to speak loudly to us.
Justice is a word that we hear thrown about but in most cases isn’t a word we have spent a ton of time exploring, defining or seeking. In the Bible the word “justice” is always used in connection with God. Biblical references to the word “justice” mean “to make right.” Justice is, first and foremost, a relational term — people living in right relationship with God, and one another.
Kindness is seen as the embodiment of justice. Where there is mercy offered, kindness shared, God is moving. As God is just and loving, so we are called to do justice and live in love. There is a great quote about justice that says, “Justice is what love looks like lived out in public.” What do you think that looks like? Can you think of examples of love lived as justice?
When you hear the word justice what images come to mind, what bubbles up in your heart? What does the word justice mean to you? What does meekness or kindness mean to you? What does it mean to walk humbly with our God?
Can you think of Bible stories that lift up justice, mercy, kindness and walking with God? After you have made your list, here are some other verses you might want to check out:
106:3, Matthew 5:1-12, Matthew 25:31-46, Mark 12:28-34, and Luke 4:14-29.
Amos 5:24 says, “But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” Amos is saying; Let God make everything right, flow like a river that brings life to the places it runs. What would that look like in your imagination, in your dreams? Is that what Micah is talking about too?
As we come into July, I wonder if this might be a month when we seek to study justice and explore what it means in scripture, what it means to Jesus, what it means to us and what it means for our world.
Scripture is full of God seeking to be in relationship and caring for the fullness of humanity. As we seek to walk humbly with God, may we listen for the Word of God, listen for today’s Prophets, learn from the cries of people fighting injustice, and respond alike with mercy and kindness.
Siblings in Faith, may we find God’s justice in our hearts, mercy in our actions and love lived out.