The Lord Most High is the one who gives life to every heart, who gives life to the spirit!” Isaiah 38:16
For the life of me, I do not know how I managed to get into the twisted position of being partially on my couch and partially off it while sound asleep one afternoon. Of course the camera had to come out.
Apparently, I started in one position, moved to this one where I slept for more than a half hour and then while still asleep moved myself back up onto the couch. It should come as no surprise to anyone why I find it easy to sleep in a cardboard box each year for homeless young adults whom Covenant House serves.
But as this new decade begins and 2019 fades into the distance I have been thinking about sleep and perhaps being out of position. It seems that in the world we live in frequently it is easier to put our faith requirements aside or to sleep rather than having to confront the world whose priorities more often than not are diametrically opposite of Jesus’ teachings. Most of us have friends or family members whose very mantra of life goes against even the basic tenets of the Gospels and it’s so much easier to go along with them rather than suggesting that our choice for life’s walk is based on what God expects and through what Jesus taught. I have had people tell me … pastor, shh quiet down because you don’t want to offend those who celebrate points of few that counter Scripture and frankly over the past months I have been too quiet and have cowered under the barrage of loud shouting anger.
As people of faith, we really get ourselves all twisted up when we try to live for Jesus and the world. We often find ourselves positioned as I am in this photo … turned in many directions perhaps with our heads just buried to escape the pressure and challenge.
So as we leave 2019 behind celebrating the growth in missions and growth in children’s ministry and growth in membership at St. Paul’s I want each of us to consider revival of our faith. I know that I am putting a plan in place to bring me back to where I need to be; I have opened up some of Pastor Lewis’ books in my office to read what the pastor of my youth read as part of his ministry.
We are temporarily canceling the evening online Bible Study frankly because most weeks no one from St. Paul’s participated in it. I am going to ask you to provide input into what type of online study fits with your lifestyle and then we will try to choose a time and day that works for the largest number of people. Our Tuesday morning study is being renamed REVIVAL and it will continue every Tuesday morning at 8am for 30 minutes of Scripture, prayer and conversation using ZOOM. I hope that more of you will join in that time of coffee and faith.
I am going to launch a sermon series indirectly related to Adam Hamilton’s book CREED. I think the Apostle’s Creed is a great starting place for a revival for our individual faith walk. I encourage you to purchase Adam’s book and St. Paul’s will be purchasing copies. When you state “I believe” what exactly does that mean to you, how does that impact your life each day, and do you personally relate to the statement “I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth?”
I am sure that 2020 is going to bring change in your life, in my life, and in the life of the church. I pray that we each listen to how God’s Holy Spirit is directing us towards a better relationship with the Holy that also makes us the people God intended us to be.
2019 has been a good year for St. Paul’s. We are literally reaching the world for Jesus Christ and as witnessed by the baptism in December, we are making new disciples for Christ through the ministries of our church!
Happy New Year Church … welcome REVIVAL and let’s get to work living for God and Christ each day!