Pastor’s Corner (12/12/19)
The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall graze, their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder’s den. They will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. Isaiah 11:6-9
The season of Advent seems to be flying by all too quickly. It’s hard to believe that Christmas Eve is less than 2 weeks away and that the year 2019 will draw to a close in just 3 weeks. As we move through this season and prepare for the New Year, we are invited to look at the world and our lives differently. The prophet Isaiah shared a vision of God’s reign that lifted up the dream of a harmony and peace that encompasses the entire created order. As we move through Advent towards the beginning of 2020, we too are invited to ponder such a world. How would our lives and our world be different if we looked at things from the perspective of God’s glory? How might we invite this vision of harmony and peace into our lives, our homes, and our congregation?
In my sermon on the 2nd Sunday of Advent, I cited a study entitled “How We Gather.” Jill Duffield, editor of Presbyterian Outlook, mentioned this study and shared an internet link (https://sacred.design/insights) if you want to lean more. Thurston and ter Kuile, the creators of this study, discovered six consistent themes in places where Millennials often gather. I would synthesize this list down to 5:
Personal and Social Transformation
I would like to suggest that we explore these 5 themes as a congregation. Any of these themes would have describe the Church at one time and, I believe, they could be descriptions of the Church once again. Creating a culture in which these themes are encouraged and developed will lead to the realization of the vision shared by the prophet Isaiah. As we develop and nurture these 5 qualities, we will be led closer to the harmony and peace lifted up in this holy season.
May God strengthen and guide us as we nurture these qualities in our own lives, in our community and in our congregation. May the harmony and peace of this season fill your lives, your homes, and our world.
In Peace and Love,