Community in Action

Are we there yet? There is good news on the horizon, we hear that barber shops, sporting events, and even religious services might be opening up soon, but not yet.

    This is kind of like when Jesus came and announced all that was going to change here on earth. Good news would be preached to the poor, freedom would be proclaimed to the prisoners, the blind would see, and the oppressed would be set free (Luke 4:18).

    And some of this did happen while Jesus walked between his home base Capernaum and the religious capital Jerusalem, but not all of it. At least not every time Jesus was exposed to people in those conditions. And not everywhere that Jesus walked.

    We believe the Kingdom of God came here on earth when Jesus showed up, “The time has come . . . The Kingdom of God has come near. (Mark 1:15)” Jesus ushered in a new era with his presence and with his death and resurrection.

    The kingdom of God is here, but not fully present. We are in the midst of the in-between time of the kingdom being here, but not fully yet.

    Some day God will exalt him so that every knee will bow and “every tongue confess Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:11)”

    So it is with the Shelter in Place. We are slowly moving out of the restrictions, out of the requirements, out of the confinements in which we have lived for the last nine weeks. Yet our former, or our new found, freedom is not here yet. We still need to operate in the limited capacity in which we have lived. We still need to find creative ways to connect with others, to help out those around us, to proclaim the life-giving grace God offers everyone.

    My heart is lighter now that I know there is positive change afoot, but I need to remember there are still limitations around me.

    Nothing made me more aware of this than while I was driving to work this morning I noticed my feet felt a bit more comfortable than usual. Then I realized I still had on my house slippers. Back home and then out again, only to find that the intersection at Village Parkway and Amador Valley Blvd. was cordon off by police cars. There were about eight to ten cars with lights flashing and officers gathering in the parking lot near the Copper Skillet.

    The abrupt change from traveling to work to detouring two different times for two different reasons, reminded my that we are still in an era where unexpected change can cause us to move in a different direction. But I still got to work, it just took a little longer and required traveling a different route.

    So we are still operating in the Kingdom of God, which is here now, but not fully yet. We are still here to proclaim freedom to the prisoners, but it may be in a different way than we anticipated.

    Let us not lose heart, but continue to remain faithful for the glorious end is in sight, in fact it could be just around the next bend.


    Pastor Randy

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