From the Desktop of the Pastor – Week of the 4th Sunday after the Epiphany

Hi everyone,

The other day our daughter came up to me and told me that she had a secret to tell me. Usually when she does this, she just wants me to lean down and put my ear into her face so she can blow raspberries into it, so I was prepared for the worst. Well, she surprised me with something she actually wanted to say, which was, “Dad, the reason why I am so angry at you in the morning when you wake me up is because you’re annoying.”

Yes, I am still laughing at it. Literally right now in my seat as I’m typing this. I am chucking alone in my office. It was that funny.

I mean, she has a point. It can be annoying when someone walks into your room at the wee hours of the morning, disturbs your sleep, and makes fun of you until you’re ready to inflict some serious bodily harm by kicking said person in the leg. So I get it.

But the thing is, I can’t not wake her up for school. We are part of a system that expects her in school in the mornings. Maybe it isn’t fair, maybe it’s not right, maybe she can learn to sleep earlier. The point is, I’m not trying to be annoying when I wake her up (ok, maybe I am a little), but I’m trying to get her up so she can get on her with her day and be prepared for life in general. I’m not waking up because I don’t love her, I’m waking her up because I do.

I do even when she is angry at me for being annoying. I do when she isn’t. I just do no matter what.

Here are the readings for next week:
Micah 6:1-8
Psalm 15
1 Corinthians 1:18-31
Matthew 5:1-12

So it’s a little weird to get these Beatitudes out of Matthew so soon after we got them out of Luke (this past All Saint’s Day) as if you remember, I mentioned how I liked how Luke described them more than Matthew. And now here we are, in Matthew (it’s a little awkward). By the slight off chance that you don’t remember what I said about my feelings toward the Matthew account, it’s because all Matthew only lists out the blessings while Luke included the woes.

But looking at the Matthew account again this time (which I pretty much have to since it’s up for next week), I see the possible reason why Matthew didn’t have to include the woes. I’m wondering if in this case, it just wasn’t needed because life was already so full of woes.

And so these beatitudes remind them that in spite of the woes… they are loved. In spite of the difficulties that life present to them, they are cherished. In spite of how annoying the systems that we are a part of (or people in general) can be, we are blessed. I know it doesn’t always feel like it, I know it’s not always clear, and I know it’s just sometimes easier to be angry, but it is true. We are loved, cherished, and blessed.

It is my prayer that we are able to find hope in this truth and promise, that it might sustain us throughout our lives and the ups and downs that are presented to us.

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

Photo by Maks Styazhkin on Unsplash

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