To The Point for May 28 2020

A Word about the Word

Unless the LORD builds the house, they who build it labor in vain. [Psalm 127:1]

Numerous contemporary things dance in my brain as I read these words. 

I watch and hear the final building work going on in the renovated Worship Center. It will be ready to give us a bright and shiny new welcome as we return on June 7.

This Sunday is Pentecost Sunday. On that day almost 2,000 years ago, the Lord began building his house, the Church, in powerful and beautiful ways! The original disciples, instead of taking matters into their own hands, retreated and prayed and waited expectantly for the Lord to move and begin building his Church. And you know the amazing rest of the story!

The risen Christ is still building his Church. And as we plan our re-entry into public worship on June 7, we labor with delicate care, bathing every decision in prayer, waiting expectantly for the Lord to fill this place and his people once again with hope and power.

Close to Home

Last Sunday, Sue and I were part of a high school graduation party caravan wherein we all drove far and wide to congratulate Trinity’s many graduating seniors. I came away with a couple things:

Many families come long distances to be a part of the Trinity community. I am grateful for all of them, and what they add to the Trinity family is vital and beautiful. 

And still, the neighborhoods adjacent to our campus… Pray and envision with me what it will take to make meaningful inroads to our dear neighbors next door. The Lord has our campus right where it is for a good purpose.
 

The World as It Is: George Floyd

I watched the entire video of his arrest and inhumane detainment. “I can’t breathe!” How do you not stop what you’re doing to him? How do you keep your knee on his throat for all that time until he goes lifeless?

Racism is destroying our country, still. Since our inception, it is clearly America’s horrible Achilles heel. The message that the African Americans in our land repeatedly hear is that their lives are inferior—in significance, in value, in consequence. And that breaks their Creator’s heart. We need to take a serious look at the state of America right now!

Maybe it’s because I am white, but I have said far too little about this evil. When we pray “thy kingdom come,” we are praying for racial unity. This is not a political issue—it’s a humanity issue, a spiritual issue. And it must be a church issue. Pray and envision with me what it will take for us individually and as a church to address and act so that the ungodly injustice of racism may be curbed in our lifetime. America has a very serious problem and we must be part of the solution.

I have a friend—a former intern of mine—who is now a pastor in Hudson. Mike is white. He and his wife have a dear son that they adopted (he is black). Their grief and heartbreak over such hatred and racism is very real. This most recent tragedy turned Mike into a lamenting poet. You can read his poem “I Wish I Never Saw That Knee” below.
 

#CultureNerd

I recently came across this virtual tour. Do you know who Corrie ten Boom is? Her family are Dutch Christians who hid Jews from the Nazis during the Holocaust in their home and watch shop. Eventually they were all caught and arrested. Her parents and sister did not survive concentration camp. Only Corrie did. For her work of helping Jews escape the Nazis, she is recognized in the American Holocaust Museum and at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem as “one of the righteous among the Nations.” Corrie ten Boom wrote The Hiding Place, which tells the heroic story. 

And Then There’s This…


I’ll see you on the other side (virtually).
Pastor Paul

==

“I Wish I Never Saw That Knee”
Mike Holwerda

I wish I never saw that knee
Pushing in his neck for all to plainly see

I wish I never saw that knee
As a bending final blow to his image-bearing humanity 

I wish I never saw that knee
Not letting go until he could not breathe

I wish I never saw that knee
Which again highlights how all are not seen equally

I wish I never saw that knee
As yet another deadly fruit of white supremacy

I wish I never saw that knee
As it exposes the racism that is also within me

I wish I never saw that knee
For I feel helpless and only able to grieve

I wish I never saw that knee
It leaves me wondering what change we will ever see

I wish I never saw that knee
Oh, Lord my God, how can this still be? 

I wish I never saw that knee
When will your church fight for our Jesus-bought unity?

I wish I never saw that knee
Oh, God my Refuge, we need your help immediately

I wish I never saw that knee
Please, oh Lord, be near and comfort George Floyd’s family

I wish I never saw that knee
May you bring your pure justice to the Twin Cities

I wish I never saw that knee
Oh, Jesus my Savior, please come quickly

I wish I never saw that knee
Until then, let that be the last video we ever see

I wish I never saw that knee