From the Desktop of the Pastor – Week of Reformation Sunday

Hi everyone,

So our kids have been at school for a good month now, and so far so good. Both schools that my kids attend have been safe and Burnaby in general has been pretty good with only 3 cases of COVID on all their schools, and no outbreaks as far as we know. This “new normal” that so many people have been calling it seems to now just be “normal” because really, it feels like we’ve been at this for years now even though it’s just been months.

But the kids get up for school, get ready, and just automatically reach for their masks and put them on. They get to school and they stand in line a good distance away from the person in front of them. Our daughter won’t even touch her hair without getting some hand sanitizer first.

For some of us who aren’t connected to the school system at all, it sounds like a lot has changed. But for our kids, it seems like they have already forgotten how it was before. They recognise that this way is for their own good, the safety of others, and the general well-being of their community.

And honestly, I’m ok with that. In fact, I’m happy about that. I’m glad that they have the chance to go through something like this that can bring to light some of the underlying issues of not just germ transfer, but how to care for each other as well. So not only do they stay as safe as possible in their context, but the way they see each other has shifted, reformed if you will, to understand that lives, other than their own, matter.

That is a good thing.

Here are the texts for Reformation Sunday (which are the same for every Reformation Sunday):
Jeremiah 31:31-34
Psalm 46
Romans 3:19-28
John 8:31-36

I love this passage out of Jeremiah and I’m really glad it comes every year on Reformation Sunday. To me, it totally speaks of the Christian faith and I guess the Reformation as well (appropriately so). And I think it runs parallel with what I was talking about before the break of scripture links about the “new normal” that is now just “normal”.

I mean, that is sort of what the Reformation was about, wasn’t it?

It wasn’t to split the church, it wasn’t to break the rules, it wasn’t to add another level of control onto the people. But rather, it was to teach people how to rightfully care for each other, how to live in community, to be set free of the bondage imposed on us by our sin, by our own ideas of what is right and true, and in many cases, our own privilege and the privilege of others that might have been oppressive toward us.

As disciples of Jesus, we just will continue to seek the truth. We will continue to feel and display God’s love. We will live out the “new normal” of life, love, and community as it just becomes to us, normal.

This is what the Reformation was about. This is what our faith tells us about ourselves and each other. This is what was written on our hearts when God entered into our lives with grace, peace, and truth.

It is my hope and prayer that as we continue to live through this pandemic, that we find how we can continue caring for each other and living in community as this new normal just transitions into our normal. May we always see God continually living among us, guiding us, and revealing to us new ways to express our faith in the truth and love of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Thanks be to God! Have a great week, everyone!

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

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