Monday, September 11, 2017

Letter for an anxious church...


























I woke up this morning feeling like I needed to write. The past few weeks I have encouraged our church to pray this prayer from Psalm 143:8, "Let us hear of your steadfast love in the morning, for in you we put our trust. Teach us the way we should go, for to you we lift up our soul." We are so often anxious about our world. We are anxious about the future. We are anxious about our church. We are anxious about people we love who are sick. 

We do a couple of unhealthy things when we are anxious. We check out and give up. Or we seek more control and power. 

Yet very seldom do we pray for God to lead the way. 

I love how this verse begins, "Let us hear of your steadfast love in the morning..." What was the first thing you heard this morning? For me, it was the news. Mostly bad news. 

Often times we fill ourselves with bad news. This leads to an anxious spirit, which can lead us to make bad decisions or to worry.  

Our concern and anxiety about our future so often don't come from the abundance of God's steadfast love but from bad places. It comes from gossip. It comes from the nightly news. 

I am not saying that we shouldn't be concerned about our churches' future. Or those devastated by the hurricanes. Or the looming talk of wars with other countries. 

Yet what I am saying is that our response doesn't come from an anxious spirit. But it comes from the abundance of God's grace. It is out of the abundance of God's steadfast love that we are generous. It is out of the abundance of God's steadfast love that we as a Christ following people can say, "it will be okay." It is out of this same spirit that we proclaim, "do not be afraid."