Happy Tuesday! We have been away on a holiday for five days in Bismarck North Dakota. It was an awesome holiday. Yet the Church we attended on Sunday was so sad. The minister had been asked to leave after a portion of the congregation basically said, "We don't like the changes you are bringing". How sad. How terribly sad that that portion of the congregation does not realize that Worship of God does not stand still. Worship of God changes as we grow in our love of God.
Too frequently these days we hear of congregations tossing their ministers. If the Session has a problem with a minister, it should be dealt with at Session through much prayer and retreat. If a portion of the congregation rises up and tosses out the Minister, the Session needs to be reminded of their Spiritual Leadership and meet with the portion of congregation who are upset and tell them the process for peacemaking. Having the congregation sign a petition to get rid of the Minister is not it. This just leads to more conflict and anger within the congregation.
Peacemaking. While this sounds so simple, it really is this simple. Prayer, reading Scripture, and Retreat. Reflecting upon God and the love of God will take away the anger and conflict.
Many prayers for all Sessions and congregations undergoing conflict and anger. May they see God's love and grace.
Prayer: Lord Jesus Christ, You know what we need before we ask. You know our thoughts before they are formed in our minds. You are full of compassion and love. Help us to share this compassion and love with those we meet this day. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Read St. Matthew 22: 41 – 46
As the Pharisees are trying to regroup themselves after Jesus’ revelation of Commandments (from yesterday’s Devotional), Jesus asks them two questions: “What do you think about the Christ? Who’s son is he?”
The Pharisees reply, “David’s son”. Remember that in the Old Testament it is written that the Messiah would come up from the line of David. Yet Christ did not get his authority from his physical descendant but from God. The Pharisees were hoping for a Messiah that would overthrow the Roman Rule.
Jesus then asks the Pharisees why David would call the Christ LORD (the unspoken name of God) and not son. Jesus quotes to them from Psalm 110:1 The Pharisees are stumped. Why indeed if the Christ is to be David’s son (or descendant) would David call the Christ, LORD. David was looking for the Christ… the one who would return everyone to God, not one who would overthrow governments.
Do we have times when we want the Scriptures to be read in our favour? For instance, I’m sure somewhere in the Scriptures it says to eat a chocolate bar for one’s health. But in reality, does Scripture really say we need to eat chocolate bars? No, not at all. Sometimes what we want to hear (or read) is not what is actually written. This is the time we must rely on God and ask God to open our ears and hearts to the Scriptures.
Prayer: Great God, we make known our requests to You in prayer. Give ear to our prayers and attend to the voice of our supplications. This we ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.