The 10 Best Ways

Sermon by the Rev. Abby VanderBrug on Sunday, September 6, 2020.

This is the desert. It is a dangerous place. People do not go into the desert unless they have to. There is no water there, and without water we die. There is no food there. Without food we die.

When the wind blows, it changes the shape of the desert. People get lost. Some never come back.

In the daytime the sun is so hot that people must wear lots of clothes to protect themselves from the sun and the blowing sand. The sand stings when it hits your skin. The sun scorches you by day. At night it is cold. You need many clothes to keep warm.The desert is a dangerous place. People only go there if they have to.

The people of God went through the water into freedom. They were free, and Miriam led the dancing!

Now that the people are free, they can go anywhere they want to go and do anything they want to do. Where will they go now? What is the best way?

God loved the People so much that God showed them the Ten Best Ways to Live. Sometimes these ways are called the Ten Commandments.

As the people traveled across the desert, they followed fire by night and smoke by day. They began to complain. Some even wanted to go back to Egypt. There was not enough food. There was not enough water. God helped Moses find food and water. Finally they came to the great mountain.

The People came close to the mountain, but they were afraid to touch it. Mount Sinai was covered with fire and smoke. Moses was the only one who had the courage to climb up into the fire and smoke to meet God.

When Moses was on top of the mountain, he came so close to God, and God came so close to him, that he knew what God wanted him to do. God wanted him to write the Ten Best Ways to Live on stones and bring them down the mountain to the People.

God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses. Moses gave them to the people and they gave them to us.

Love God. Love people. God loves us.

  1. Don’t serve other gods.
  2. Make no idols to worship.
  3. Be serious when you say my name
  4. Keep the Sabbath holy.
  5. Honor your mother and father.
  6. Don’t kill.
  7. Don’t break your marriage.
  8. Don’t steal.
  9. Don’t lie.
  10. Don’t even want what others have.

I know. These are all hard. God did not say that these are the “ten easy things to do.” They are the Ten Best Ways to Live, the Ten Commandments. They are hard, perhaps even impossible, but we are supposed to try.

They mark the best way—like stones can show the right path.

I wonder which one of the Ten Best Ways you like the best?

I wonder which one is most important?

I wonder which one is especially for you?

I wonder if there are any we can leave out and still have all we need?

Now, let’s go back again to the story. I wonder what part of the whole story you like best?

I wonder what part of the story is the most important?

I wonder where you are in the story or what part of the story is about you?

I wonder if there is any part of the story we can leave out and still have all the story we need?

*This is a Godly Play Foundation story.