out of the Darkness; Into the light
Jesus tells his followers: "You are the light of the world ... therefore let your light so shine before others so that they may see your good works and glorify your father in heaven" (Matthew 5:14-16). When a person is baptized into the life of Christ, we had that child of God a lit candle and send them out with a charge to shine the light of Christ in all they do. As followers of Jesus and baptized children of God, we called out of the darkness that surrounds us and into the light of God's mercy, forgiveness and love, and we are sent to shine that light in the darkness, to make this world brighter in Jesus' name. To be light in the darkness is our work, and Christ Jesus is our light.
Our day of national Thanksgiving marks the start of a season of celebration that is marked by giving. Sometimes we give joyfully, sometimes grudgingly and out of mere obligation. Sometimes we give out of an abundance of love and sometimes we give out of a deep desire to be loved in return. And throughout the season, we witness both the ugliness of consumption and consumerism and the beauty of generosity and the deep desire for the peace and healing of the world. It is my prayer for you that you not only seek and dwell in what is good, beautiful and true this holiday season, but that by the Spirit given to you in your baptism you actively and passionately live as the light Jesus Christ in your part of the world.
Through the worship life and activities of this congregation, the Holy Spirit is calling each of us to return to the source of the light within us, to reconnect, renew and recharge, to stir up the fire that gives light to the world around us by deliberately tending to our relationship with Jesus. Worship and prayer and service and fellowship are ways through which God Spirit fans the flames that fuel the light.
Worship and Prayer.
Service and Fellowship.
December is a month of giving in this congregation, and this year our special offerings are designed as a fun way for you to invite your family, your friends and even your neighbors to join you in generously giving the resources so that light of God's love can shine in our neighborhood and around the world. These are giving projects that are designed to help you inspire others with the Christmas story.
People in our neighborhood, our country and our world are searching for something to restore their faith, inspire their love and give them a solid reason to hope in the middle of a dark and chaotic world. It was to this world that God has come as a human being, the baby Jesus, so that through him our relationship with God might be healed and our faith renewed, so that through him we might learn the height, depth and breadth of God's love for us and this whole planet, so that through him we might see the promise of our future together in the light of God's presence and in that promise find our sure and certain hope for life.
Now is the time and the season to let your light so shine before others that they may see your good works and glorify your father in heaven.
In Jesus' name
Pastor Jim Krombholz
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