This week we pondered the fact that this
Sunday's gospel was Luke's version of the same story we heard last
Sunday from John. Then we looked at the differences and wondered
together what God might be saying to us in this repetition. Was there a
message for us, the people of Emmanuel? We realized that in some ways we
are like those frightened, huddled, disciples whose numbers have
dwindled. And we, like them have lost our leader. And so Jesus comes to
them and to us in the midst of our fears and says "Peace be with you."
And Oh, by the way, your ministry is going to grow again and you are to
share with the whole world, or at least those in your world, two things.
Remind them that, whenever they find themselves off track, to turn
their lives around, and also that they have a merciful God and they are
forgiven. And don't you dare try to do this without the help of the Holy
Then we decided that often the best way to do
this is not by standing on the street corner handing out tracts, but by
being prepared to share bits and pieces of our story with people when
the opportunity presents itself. We can get ready for this by asking
ourselves questions like, What difference has the risen Christ made in
my life? What is the unique way that I get guidance from Jesus
when I need it? How do I live my life differently because I am a part
of the Jesus movement? Who in my life needs to hear that there is a
different way to live?
Finally we were encouraged by the words of
author Minerva Carcano..."We are Jesus' witnesses and those who need to
receive our witness is the entire human family."
With great love and dreams for this community,
P.S. We had three more newcomers this Sunday!
Please come be a part of the warm welcome. It seems as though the Holy
Spirit is working hard to build up our community right now!