SUNDAY SERVICES CANCELED
Stay safe, read or listen to a sermon under the sermon tab, pray and return to us Sunday, January 31st. The Lord bless and keep you +
So my snow shovel from the last two years is pretty worn and I thought I might buy me one on Weds, two days before the end of the world as we know it (this is actually a song by R.E.M. and I think you might want to listen to it as you watch the blizzard roll in, while drinking some hot cocoa of course)… so I was hoping to buy me one (I admit this is poor grammar) and Home Depot was completely out of snow removal implements. Like there was a rapture, but only snow removal tools were taken and we’re left behind (that is a title too of a bad movie about “THE rapture” but I’m not linking to it). This got me thinking: if the world were really to be near an end then would people rush to churches to care for their souls? And the answer to that is, I’m afraid, no. How would I know this? Because even if people as a rule (at least in America the united states of entertainment) do not believe they have a soul much less that their souls might be in any danger, they do know beyond any measurable doubt that their lives are limited. Finite. Brief. The world is ending every day. People know this but… yeah. Life pretty much goes on until it doesn’t and lots of people ponder at that moment why they didn’t prepare for the fact that their lives end, that life is very precious and might should be lived justly and in harmony with God. Yes, you could use a shovel in DC this week-end but you need your soul any day and anywhere.
Be careful. Stay tuned. If we must cancel church then we will post an announcement to that effect right here. Check in on Sunday morning before you head out. If the meteorologists are wrong and it just rains then I look forward to seeing you Sunday. You can put your snow shovel back in the shed or wherever you store it and bring your soul into a holy place. Because we need soulcare. Just look around: the warnings are up, the evidence is glaringly obvious: something is awry.
Leave the “tournament of lies”* (*R.E.M. in the song noted above), turn off the talking heads, and enter a sanctuary of peace. ~ See you next Sunday, January 31st, snowflakes.
For those of you who attended Sunday services the first Sunday in 2016, for those of you who asked and for those absent but interested, you may find my sermon, “A New Year’s Day Enchiridion,” on the sermon page. We have begun another year, celebrating Christ’s birth, sharing in holy communion and worshipping God together. This is an auspicious beginning and one we want to carry through in the weeks and months ahead.
Despite the broken world with its violence and ideological hatreds, we are called to love one another. You might be able to do this all on your own but I doubt it. Love is communal and is thus in need of a community. We need you and you need us. May God meet us at this point of mutual need and transform us into those who heal the world instead of those who harm it. Grace and Peace to you and yours in 2016 +
~See you Sunday
The Cambridge Dictionary defines synergy this way: “the combined power of a group of things when they are working together that is greater than the total power achieved by each working separately…”
In Acts 10:38, the Apostle Peter reflected on the ministry of Christ: “You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.”
The word “power” in the scripture comes from a Greek word dynamis, the word we turn into English as dynamite. Dynamite when used carefully and intelligently can remove obstacles. Synergy is a combined power. It is a word that speaks to the greater achievements of a group of things as opposed to one thing working by itself. Such a word, synergy, can describe the Church.
We come together to work in harmony and with each other in order to heal the world, thwart oppression and by God’s Spirit, remove obstacles that prevent persons from fulfilling their God-given humanity. When this happens, it is a wondrous thing to behold. This past Sunday, I thought of the synergy of spirit as our choir sang, musicians played and we, the congregation prayed and worshipped together. I beheld this synergy again when after worship our Faith and Justice Team inaugurated its ministry around a table with more than a dozen persons passionate to “weld words to deeds” as I had said in my sermon for the day. (by the way, the web site now has a Faith and Justice Team page so we can communicate our efforts and share resources)
Love begets love. Grace abounds. May the Spirit anoint us for this day and this hour and may the power of Christ and the synergy of our mutual devotion and affection help transform and heal the world. ~See you Sunday