From the Desktop of the Pastor – Week of the 5th Sunday after Easter

Hi everyone,

So it was a beautiful day yesterday and we had to take advantage of the first actually warm day of the year. We did what seems like every family in Burnaby with kids in grade school did yesterday, and that’s to go to Central Park. It was pretty crowded. I’m just glad that we were planning on eating there because those picnic tables were pretty scarce.

But it was nice to get outside and walk around. Really nice. Even the kids commented on how nice (and crowded) it was to be outside at the park on such a nice day. However, as nice as it was, we inevitably had to go home at their actual explicit request.

And you know what? It wasn’t so bad being back home. Yes, I know we’ve been at home a lot for the past 3 years, but it’s just nice to be back where it’s comfortable, where we can put our feet up, and to be where our hearts are. I remember walking through the door after the day’s activities as fun as they were, and just feeling the tension (that I didn’t even know what there, mind you) lift off my shoulders and I was able to relax. There is just something about being home.

That isn’t to say that we should never leave the house ever again, as that could be problematic even in this day and age when we can have pretty much anything (even a car) delivered to your front door. But it is to say that having a place to call home provides a comfort that no sunny day can replace. Having a place to hang your hat gives us a security that can’t really be replicated anywhere else. Knowing that our hearts can be found in a place of warmth, community, and relationship reminds us that we are part of something bigger where we are loved, accepted, and belong.

Having said that, I still love going out and doing stuff (especially on sunny days), but it’ll always be nice to return home (like after work, for instance).

Here are the readings for next week:
Acts 7:55-60
Psalm 31:1-5, 15-16

1 Peter 2:2-10

John 14:1-14

This gospel reading that we’re getting for next week is a very popular one, especially when it comes to funerals or end-of-life situations. We are often told that Jesus here is talking about the place that he is preparing for us in heaven. That is nice and all when thinking about the future, but I prefer to think more in our current times. As in, the home that Jesus is preparing for us is in the here and now, in our family, in our community, in this body of Christ to which we all belong.

Because really, just as we need comfort in times of death, we also need comfort in times of trouble, times of worry, times of pretty much everything that disturbs us. Which, in this day and age, seems to happen weekly at least. So knowing and being reassured that we have a place in God’s kingdom, a part in the community of Christ, a home in the church brings us peace, joy, and hope.

While I’m not saying that this passage isn’t about death and our place that awaits us in heaven, I am also saying that this passage speaks to us now, in our “now times”, reminding us that through the hardships and pains of life we continue to be loved, to be welcomed, and to belong in wide and open arms of our God, where we can call home.

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

Photo by James Lee on Unsplash

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