Randy's Reflections
May 2, 2019, 4:00 PM

Pastor Randy's May Reflection



LUKE 24:  46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”

 

 

Easter was a fabulous celebration this year! It is the high point of the year as we celebrate what Jesus had done for us. Yet, it is also the beginning of our entrance into the Kingdom of God. We are called to be the witnesses to the world of the hope that is within us. When we accept Jesus into our hearts, our tradition says that the Holy Spirit enters into our lives and begins to transform us as we are “clothed in power from on high.”

There is nothing else we need to do to become part of this Kingdom governed by the most holy, loving and eternal God. As part of our gratitude, we share with those around us who we are and how God is touching our lives. We don’t have to use eloquent speech, we don’t have to have some dramatic story or monumental change in our life, and we don’t have to always use words. We are witnesses of who God is in our lives in the way we talk, in the way we walk, and even in the way we are simply present in the lives of the people around us.

Sometimes, as a witness, I struggle with wanting to be nice. That is not to say I don’t like being nice; I do like being nice. “Nice” is an adjective people use to describe people who are kind, courteous, friendly, and agreeable. It is used most often as a compliment. I like receiving compliments, don’t you? The one problem with being called nice, is it usually means we do things that are deemed acceptable by the majority of people; it is the people who determine if someone is nice. It also means that you learn to depend on people to judge whether or not you are nice, and maybe you even seek their approval to be labeled nice so you can feel good about yourself.

I would rather be all those things mentioned above, but depend on God to be my judge. God certainly is the one who looks after us, but God is also concerned about everyone else, even all of his creation, animals and landscapes all. God wants the best for this continually unfolding creation. There will be times when being nice isn’t helpful, especially when it hinders what is good. God made the world and called it good, but that means not everything or everyone got their way. There will be times when we want something and it is not good or beneficial or healthy for us, not to mention the best for the world.

I love the sign Believe there is good in the world, but I think that not just believing there is good is important. I think as witnesses of God’s kingdom in the world we need not just believe, we need to Be the good in the world. That means sometimes people may disagree with what we stand for. People may disagree when we upset the status quo, when we are not nice. This is why we need to depend on God to guide us and not the will of the people.

It is a lot more taxing to be good than to be nice, but I believe that is why we need the Holy Spirit to help us discern when we need to break out of just being nice and instead be good. Also I believe it is the Holy Spirit who gives us the power to be good, even if it means not being nice. Good is better than nice, but nice is good second.

Growing in the good with you,

Pastor Randy