May 6, 2021

A Word about the Word

And Jesus was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts, and the angels ministered to him… He went up into the hills to pray. When evening came, he was there alone.

Jesus was a man of solitude and aloneness.

This pandemic season has been nothing if not a time of forced solitude and, dare I say, loneliness. 

For Jesus, the aloneness was a place of spiritual battle. A hard place of testing, of meeting himself, of finding spiritual help. A place to pray, finding God alone…God enough.

May it be so for us.

Close to Home

And… “Where two or more are gathered, there I am in their midst.” [Jesus]

Solitude and fellowship. We need both. Shared joys and prayers and tears and biblical words.

That’s why Sue is working around the clock writing a new study for this fall’s women’s discipleship.

That’s why we are recruiting and promoting our new summer small groups like mad. Want more info? Click here.      

Comforter, Helper, Counselor, Advocate, Consoler: all titles for this Sunday—not necessarily for the mothers we will honor (though they could be), but for the Holy Spirit that indwells and forms us into Christ’s image.

Cleveland sports—always extremes! Great draft, Browns! If you look up “done” in the dictionary, you’ll probably see a team picture of the Cavs. And how ‘bout them Indians?! First place, baby…for now.

The World as It Is

What will the “post-COVID” world be like? I am a little concerned that our re-entry will be even bumpier than the trip going in. (That’s why as a church we are planning a summer of “on-ramps” to get us used to coming back to Trinity’s campus.) And while much is said about the physical toll these many months have taken on us, the psychological and spiritual toll may be quite costly as well. A while back, I wondered if this pandemic could make us more like Christ if we let it. So, while we may be concerned about how we look post-COVID and how our bodies reflect the months of quarantine and anxiety, I wonder how our souls may have been damaged. The unseen…sort of. Where do our souls find healing? Solitude and fellowship.

In Others’ Words

Soren Kierkegaard on the value and scarcity of solitude in our busy, unspiritual world:
“It is an awful satire, and an epigram on the materialism of our modern age, that nowadays the only use that can be made of solitude is imposing it as a penalty, as jail.”

Martin Luther on the progression of our faith, on always becoming and never arriving:
“This life therefore is not righteousness, but growth in righteousness, not health, but healing, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not yet what we shall be, but we are growing toward it, the process is not yet finished, but it is going on, this is not the end, but it is the road. All does not yet gleam in glory, but all is being purified.”

Graham Greene on potential and growing up:
“There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in.”

I’ll catch you on the other side.