June 3, 2021

A Word about the Word

What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done,
and there is nothing new under the sun.
[Ecclesiastes 1:9]

Ever feel like life is a monotonous routine with nothing new under the sun? Like you’re living in the movie Groundhog Day? Everything has been said, done, and thought of before. The laws and physics of nature were established by God long ago and will continue long after I am gone. Science and history can tell me how and what happens in life. But they can’t answer the why.

That’s where our Lord comes in. God does not change. His character and ways remain the same. His promises are firm. Always faithful and true. And he alone holds the why…to all of life and mine. I need to hold on to him—through his Son.

Close to Home

This Sunday (June 6) at Trinity is a big deal! Health restrictions are lifted and masks become optional. And “Riddle Me This” begins—our message series in Ecclesiastes (for home groups, too)!

Another positive aspect of re-entering life and church is bringing our kids back to in-person classes and worship. As convenient as livestream has been for many families, I have heard from more than one set of parents that experiencing worship at home in front of a screen was, at times, frustrating. Between short attention spans and not having their peers there to be “kids” with in church, Sunday mornings have been less than optimal this past year and a half. Returning to campus will be very effective in experiencing fellowship and worship again.

The World as It Is

The recent “blood moon,” the Cincinnati cicadas, and the return of Christ: “Don’t you think we are living in the end times? That the return of Christ is very near?” I have been asked those questions for 30-plus years of pastoring. Maybe more now than usual. My “pat” answer is that I do believe that the return of Christ is sooner than it’s ever been. 🙂 Here is what I can say confidently: Christ’s kingdom will come! We are to pray that way. We are to live prepared and expectantly. Jesus clearly said, about his return and “The End,” that even he doesn’t know the exact time. So in the meantime we are to live gracious, beautiful, and selfless lives today—ready for “that day.”

Naomi Osaka, the #2 women’s tennis player in the world, has dropped out of the French Open (one of the four Grand Slam tournaments of that sport). She said she needed to focus on her mental health. Osaka suffers “huge waves of anxiety” before the mandatory interviews with the media after each match. Unable to reach a compromise with the tournament officials, Osaka withdrew. There have been athletes and pundits both criticizing her and supporting her. I like the empathetic words of golf legend Jack Nicklaus. It would be wise and good to take mental health issues seriously, whether at home or in the workplace, don’t you think? 

Okay, This Is Very Cool

Check this out!

And We Pray

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace:
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy. 

O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive, 
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, 
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
[St. Francis]

I’ll catch you on the other side.