To The Point for June 19 2020

A Word about the Word

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and sound judgment [2 Timothy 1:7].

Timely words indeed. Matt, one of Trinity’s elders, has been helping our Elder team think through the issue of fear and how it pertains to these days.
 
I find the “spirit” of fear an interesting concept. Fear can come over us like a wind or a wave of panic. I remember learning that I had to play Tim Conlan in the first round of a tennis tournament. A spirit of fear (read: trepidation) encompassed my body.
 
God—as our focal point and as the resource of something better (power, love, and sound judgment)—is why fear should not be our predominant or paralyzing spirit in these or any days.
 
Read this heady article on what fear does to us physically and mentally, if you’re interested.

Close to Home

“What a cool thing you’ve done to your Worship Center!” a friend exclaimed while watching our Sunday live-stream from New York. One of the silver linings of our COVID/quarantine time was the liberty to renovate Trinity’s worship room without the disruption of public services.
 
My vision for Trinity and the generations to come is that we understand and apply the Gospel to three areas of life and justice. Let us embrace the sanctity of life as it relates to the blight of abortion, to the issue of poverty, and to the injustice of racial inequality. These topics are very interrelated, you know.
 
Watch a youth pastor simply explain “white privilege” to his students. Then grab a cup of coffee and listen to the originator of Veggie Tales give us a history lesson on race in America.
Some of you have told me that you have seen the film Just Mercy. It made a huge impact on me and Sue some months ago. Here is a brilliant discussion between Pastor Tim Keller and attorney Bryan Stevenson that helps us process the movie. You’ll need two cups of coffee for this one.
 
And if you haven’t taken a look at Trinity’s racial reconciliation resource guide, download it here. Eventually we will have ones dealing with poverty and abortion as well.

The World as It Is

The global span, rapid spread, and universal impact of COVID-19 on the world’s health and economy is truly historic. Where is it going from here? What will things be like next month? This fall? To hear some talk, COVID-19 is so yesterday. Others are concerned that there are still dangerous days yet to come. Let’s pray for the former while still being careful. The coming weeks of summer will be interesting and revealing.

#CultureNerd

Below is a picture of Germany’s parliament building. Sue and I saw it when we were in Berlin a few years ago. This government building and its redesign makes a very clear point. Modern Germany neither neutrally commemorates their evil recent past (no swastikas or statues of the Führer and his henchmen in sight) nor do they pretend the Third Reich and Nazi-ism didn’t happen. They want to learn from it.
 
Upon the reunification of West and East Germany, they took the bombed-out “Reichstag” building and repurposed it. Instead of bulldozing the Nazi HQ, they renovated it with a glass dome. The public can now climb the spiral staircase and look down through a glass ceiling over the shoulders of their government workers—a symbolic statement that though previously they were ill-served by their politicians, now everyone can keep an eye on their leaders in Germany’s parliament.

And Then There’s This…

If there is righteousness in the heart,
there will be beauty in the character.
If there is beauty in the character,
there will be harmony in the home.
If there is harmony in the home,
there will be order in the nation.
If there is order in the nation,
there will be peace in the world.
So let it be.

[Scottish Blessing]

I’ll see you on the other side.
Paul