Holy Week: Monday

Greetings, church family and friends!

Normally at this time of year two things happen. I encourage all of our elders on session to invite at least one other person to worship on Sunday. I then send them a devotional to help encourage them in their own spiritual life as they take on this vital task. This year, however, your session decided that it would be helpful to send it out to the entire congregation. So, at their urging, you are receiving this devotional. I hope it helps inspire you to drink deeply of God’s love, and to spread it to at least one other person this week.

Grace and Peace,
Pastor Kevin

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It’s Monday!

Today it is busy, like every other Monday. But especially, today we begin the journey towards Calvary, and finally towards the empty tomb. At the beginning of a journey is a good time to set the goal for our destination. What is waiting when we arrive? What difference do we hope our journey will make?

Here are some of my personal hopes:
1. That along my journey this week I will not just rush through events with the goal of getting through them so I can get on to the next. I do not want to stop and smell the roses. I want to stop and feel the pain, to stop and sense the confusion, to stop and take ownership for the guilt, to be utterly astounded by the good news.
2. That along my journey, when I feel tired, I will realize both the power at my disposal (2 Corinthians 12:9), and my humanity as a disciple (Luke 22:46).
3. That while, this journey will of necessity include times of solitude, it will primarily be a journey of community. It will be my joy and responsibility to make sure that I exercise this communal nature of the journey. Else I make a mockery of everything Christ has accomplished for the church.

I love the words of my former professor, Cynthia Campbell, who became president of McCormick Theological Seminary. In the publication Shaping Beloved Community, she describes the church as follows:

“The fruit of that promise (the promise enacted at Pentecost) is now a vivid reality: the church of Jesus Christ is present in virtually every nation and culture. Christians worship, read the Bible, and teach the faith in thousands of languages. Christianity today is embedded in such a variety of places as to be called a truly “multicultural” religious tradition.”

Indeed it is here at Saint Paul. I love the fact that we buck the trend of segregated Sundays. In so doing, we give the Holy Spirit place among us to truly manifest the power of the resurrection.

What will you do to make this week’s journey unique? How will you intentionally strengthen the journey of the entire community? Who might you inspire to take that journey for the very first time?

2 Corinthians 5:17-21
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God

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