Where do we invest our life? Do we invest in stuff that loses value over time? That is sold off for pennies on the dollar at the end of our life. What do we do with the talents God invests in us. Do we dig a hole in the ground and bury them or do we double their value? Will God say, “well done good and faithful steward?”
In the parable of the person who is robbed, beaten and left for dead, Jesus picks a controversial hero. He could have picked a less controversial character but he wanted to teach His listeners something important. Something that could speak to our world in 2021.
Maybe you can’t imagine forgiving certain people in your life. Yet Jesus says that before we can fully worship God we are to be reconciled with our brother or sister. We know that forgiveness is one response to hurt and separation that we can choose but how do we work through the feelings and resistance we may have to forgive those who have hurt us deeply.
Youth of our church will lead us in worship which is themed to explore our God given gifts and talents.
While Jesus is at a dinner with Pharisees a prostitute crashes the party. She walks into Simon’s house. He may have let out a gasp. She has perfumed ointment in her hand. Why does she come to find Jesus? Why does she bring such expensive oil? Why does she crash the party?
It is instinctive to compare ourselves to others. And when we do so we find out others are richer, skinnier, smarter, taller, prettier and happier than we are. We can’t win by comparing ourselves to others. Many of us feel that we fall short in the comparison game. What do we do?
Our self talk can be destructive. The words we speak to ourselves can be damaging. Do you start your sentences with I can’t? Do you feel that you are not worthy? Others may have torn you down with their destructive words. Fortunately there are new words we can learn for 2021.
Mary, the young mother of Jesus, was as a woman powerless in the face of those who ruled the land. Still, in the Magnificat, Mary exults in a power that comes, not from a throne or any earthly authority, but from God. God’s powerful grace and love through Jesus is then claimed for the poor and oppressed.
God sought to communicate His love and His purpose for humanity through the law, through the prophets, through scripture and worship at a temple in Jerusalem but still the people did not get it. So God did something different. God became one of us in a baby born in a stable. Emmanuel: God with us.
The word “Jesus” means “God saves.” So anytime we say the name Jesus we are saying God saves. He is the deliver. His name says He is Savior. He liberates us. He rescues us. If that is so then what does that really mean?