Approaching Advent and Christmas, it feels like the ante has been upped, the stakes have
been raised, and it is no time for bluffing here. As a child and young person growing up
in the '50s, the lectionary reading assigned for the first Sunday of Advent felt a bit forced
and fake. In the late '50s and the early '60s, talking apocalypse was not the primary skill
set of mainline folks. You sort of went through the motions on this, flattened the tension,
and ratcheted up the metaphors as best you could.
Thomas Willadsen Mary Austin Christopher Keating Dean Feldmeyer Ron Love George Reed Bethany Peerbolte
For January 20, 2018:
God Activates by Tom Willadsen — Perhaps God wants us to delight in each other and in the magnitude and depth of divine love. Perhaps the Lord wants to activate our gifts of the Spirit, to use them for the common good.
We are all intimately connected as one body in Jesus. Isaiah celebrates our intimate union with our creator, describing us as the joyful bride of God. Though there had been alienation and rejection from both sides in the past, the prophet describes us as God’s delight. That connection is also emphasized in Paul’s oddly graphic description of church folks as body parts — we need each other because we are not a living, breathing body if we are somehow separated.
When Jesus visited a wedding at Cana in Galilee, he showed that human disappointments matter to him and that he would be prepared to redeem them. This is a story about a young girl's bitter disappointment when she became a bridesmaid.