17th Sunday After Pentecost
“The human animal is not… good at forgiveness. Forgiveness is not some innate, natural human emotion. It is natural for the human ‘animal’ to defend itself, to snarl and crouch in a defensive position when attacked, to howl when wronged, to bite back when bitten. Forgiveness is not natural.” (Willimon) Forgiveness, in other words, must be something God gives and teaches. Have mercy on us, Lord, and teach us to forgive like you!
As We Face
And we trust in God. Our Savior has promised that he will never leave us or forsake us. That is true when times are good and when times are difficult. That promise can give us encouragement for the present and hope for the future. As the Psalm writer said, “God is our refuge and strength.” Jesus has conquered all evil by his death and resurrection and his victory is ours and so we can encourage and comfort one another to remain fearless in the face of danger and joyful no matter what the circumstances.
We are living in a unique time. Remember to look for opportunities to steer your conversations with neighbors and friends to the comfort and hope that we have in Christ!
Nineteenth Sunday after PentecostSERMON TEXT: 2 Timothy 1:3-14 Paul gives thanks for his people for they share something precious: the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They are called to share it together and live it together! I thank God, whom I serve, as my ancestors did, with a clear conscience, as night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers. Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your...