Community in Action September 7, 2020

Last night I woke at about 2:30 am thinking about all the people in our congregation who are going through difficult times. I thought about it in contrast to the unrest in our country right now. I thought, it is hard to be concerned about the larger picture of a nation that is in upheaval when all around us are people who are unemployed, having health issues, and learning how to adapt to a new way of living with a rampaging virus.

    Yet perhaps they can be connected. Perhaps as we show our concern for ourselves, our friends, and our neighbors we can show our concern for the wider populous in our world. It is hard sometimes to balance self-care with selfless-care. That is, it is hard to remember we need to fuel our needs when we see needs all around us running on empty. Yet how can we help fill the needs of others without first filling our own needs?

    When Jesus said to love others as we love our selves it was like he was taking for granted that we will love ourselves first. So what are you doing to love your self? What are you doing to make sure your body (physically and emotionally) is being taken care of? Are you eating well, exercising moderately, resting when you body needs it? 

    There is nothing wrong with making sure the temple God has given you is functioning well. In order for it to function well means eating, exercising, and resting are all done in moderation. There maybe some over indulgence now and then, this will happen we are a flawed people, but moderation seems to be the most healthy.

    Of course to grow in faith we need to also take care of ourselves emotionally. That means connection with others, whether through calling or writing or visiting. We need to exercise our hearts by being vulnerable with those we can trust and being the trusted person for those who share their vulnerability with us.

    We need to set boundaries not enabling others by doing everything for them or by making sure their road is smooth wherever they walk. People don’t grow if we don’t learn how to handle some of the bumps in the road by ourselves. We actually are hindering others from growing if we step in all the time to smooth things in life over for others.

    As we care for ourselves physically and emotionally I think God will provide us with opportunities to help others around us. God will also provide us with people who will offer to help us when we need it. It is one thing to care for others it is another to allow others to care for us.

    As we learn to reciprocate both in giving and receiving I think this will impact the community around us. As we learn more about our community we will have opportunities to assist to help those who need it most. Like we heard about the Philippian community yesterday. Paul asked the community to assist, or help, Euodia and Syntyche to be of the same mind, to come together with the same purpose, which is to spread the good news.

    I think we need to continue to be concerned about the world, our nation, our community around us, but let’s not forget those in our faith community who need our assistance as well. Let us continue to pray for those we know are in need and continue to find ways we can meet our own needs in a healthy way.

    We are God’s people, the ones chosen to follow the Son.

    Seeking to grow in faith with you,

    Pastor Randy

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