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Journey with John

Having served the church for nearly forty years, I’ve seen my share of bulletin bloopers. Some make me smile, some cause me to giggle and some make me laugh out loud.  A few make me weep….  Here is a sampling of messages not intended by their author:

  • We are saving aluminum cans to recycle. Proceeds will be used to cripple children.
  • Remember in prayer the many that are sick of our church and community.
  • Don’t let worry kill you off – let the church help you.
  • The music director invites anyone who enjoys sinning to join the choir.
  • Join us for the Christmas program titled: “Our God Resigns….”

That last one makes me weep.  The intended title was “Our God Reigns!”  That’s a totally different message than the one received.  Our God resigns!  What a horrible thought!  Perhaps it disturbs me, because it scares me so much.  If you think about it, God has every right to resign.  We’ve made a rather miserable mess of God’s glorious creation.  God could cite a number of legitimate reasons for resigning.

There is an unresolved war in Afghanistan.  There continue to be conflicts between Israel and Palestine.  There are countless sources warning us of the misuse of the earth and the consequences to come.  Too many innocent people are being shot on our streets and too many are dying from stray bullets ricocheting through our churches and synagogues.  An ever growing number of people will go to bed desperately hungry while another crew overeats.  I guess we haven’t learned how to share.  Regardless of attempts to move beyond racial hatred, the ugly head of prejudice remains.  Need I go on?  There would be plenty of justifiable reasons for God to resign.

But… the jaw-dropping, joy-filling, life-saving GOOD NEWS is that Christmas tells us God has NOT resigned!  God is actively, peacefully involved with the created.  God bursts into human life not with a warrior but an innocent child.  God is NOT finished with us.  God has a plan in Jesus Christ to free us of our anger so we can live in harmony.  God has a plan to teach us how to share from our abundance.  God has a plan to remind that we are ALL created in the image of God!  Our God has NOT resigned!  In the gentle, miraculous birth of the Holy Child – God REIGNS!  Isn’t that breathtaking?  Our God reigns!  Rejoice!

Love and best wishes this Christmas,

Pastor John