Today’s Word from Pastor Jim…
Some days it might seem like a good idea to just pull those covers up over your head and stay in bed. The thought could cross your mind, that perhaps calling in sick and checking out might be the sanest response to all of the pandemic, political, environmental, and cultural craziness that is waiting to greet you. It is hard to function on a steady diet of bad news. The anxiety that we are experiencing could paralyze us, drive us deep into depression, and make hope hard to come by, leaving us mired in the illusionary safety of our beds. Of course, more people die in bed than anywhere else.
I know that many of us are just plain weary. We are tired of isolation, masks, brutality of all kinds, violence on our streets, uncivil discourse, and inflammatory speech. We are weary of unrelenting social media and a 24-hour bad news cycle. It would be easy to give up and get back in bed. But then there is that Jesus fellow, that Rabbi from the Galilee, the one who taught us how to live and love. Jesus, who lived under the iron fist of Rome, was oppressed by unfair taxation and ruled by egotistical traitors. We have lots of stories about Jesus. He was a teacher, a story teller, a healer, and a miracle worker; he comforted the afflicted and afflicted the comfortable. On occasion, he would go off by himself to rest and pray, but there is not a single time that he gave up hope, pulled the covers over his eyes, and stayed in bed. Jesus was, of course, all-knowing, so undoubtedly he understood that most people die in bed.
This Sunday, I am going to be preaching a sermon titled, “Showing Up.” I would encourage you to show up, to turn off the news and tune in to some good news. The world is a mess right now. There is only one way that the story will change, and that is for good people to show up. We are despairing and grieving, but we are not defeated, helpless, or without hope. If good people shut down, the bad guys win. If we refuse to be a part of the solution, they win. If we let the political rancor tear our community apart, they win. If we let this divisiveness divide our church, they win.
“For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7
I plan on showing up this Sunday. I hope that you will show up and join me.
One day closer,