John's message called for repentance of sins. Thus baptism signified the transformed life that resulted from confessing one's sins and receiving the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Good News is that no one needs to stay in the ruts of a dysfunctional life. It was such a life with the wrong priorities that the poet, Lord Byron, described in a self-portrait on his thirty-sixth birthday: My days are in the yellow leaf; The flowers and fruits of love are gone; The worm, the canker, and the grief, Are mine alone!
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.