The letter of James opens with a reference to the purpose of trials: they are to make us grow stronger. This passage reminds me of the story of the pastor who had often prayed for patience, but seemed to lose his temper with his secretary on a regular basis. She was not a very good typist, often ran late, and confused telephone messages. Finally, in near total frustration, the man prayed again, "O God, I have asked you for patience, and yet every day I lose my temper -- why haven't you listened?
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.