Dear Sojourners, Walkers, Peddlers, Interested souls, Family members, Seekers, and Friends,
This coming Sunday is it! The last Sunday of the season of Epiphany, in which the light is brighter and sharper than ever in showing us the nature of Jesus, the Pilgrim God, who leads us on an amazing journey.
The focus Scripture is still in Mark but we jump to Mark 9:2-9, in which we read of the transfiguration or glorification of Jesus. On the top of Mt. Tabor (in Israel, that is), there is this God inspired transformation of Jesus' very clothes and appearance, in which his clothes became "dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them" (vs. 3). And standing with Jesus were the other important biblical figure, Elijah and Moses, who both experienced, first hand, the glory of God. And witnessing it all were Peter, James, and John, who didn't know what to do with all that was before them. They probably thought this was a Kodak moment, wanting to set up a memorial to this display of personalities, when what God was doing was revealing to one and all the very essence of who Jesus is: " This is my son, the Beloved, listen to him" (vs. 7). When I read this passage, I am reminded of the incongruity found in this moment of true epiphany, in which God and humankind meet, face to face (metaphorically) and we are suddenly shocked out of our small mindedness by meeting the Holy of Holies. After all, we are more like children or "cheerful, brainless tourists on a packaged tour of the Absolute...Does anyone have the foggiest idea what sort of power we blithely invoke? Or, as I suspect, does not one believe a word of it? The churches are children playing on the floor with their chemistry sets, mixing up a batch of TNT to kill Sunday morning. It is madness to wear ladies' straw hats and velvet hats to church; we should all be wearing crash helmets. Ushers should issue life preservers and signal flares; they should lash us to our pews. For the sleeping god may wake someday and take offense, or the waking god may draw us to where we can never return." (from Annie Dillard, Teaching a Stone to Talk: Expeditions and Encounters [NY: Harper and Row, 1982], pp. 40-41.) Come, daughters and sons of God in Christ: join us on the floor with our "chemistry sets" and lets see what happens this Sunday.
On our calendar of events, join us at one of the following:
Feb. 14: Ash Wednesday: we are considering meeting at a Fellowship members' home for Ash Wednesday service around 6:00 pm. Details to be shared soon.
Feb. 20: 16th Annual Faith Labor Breakfast at St. Andrew's Catholic Church at 7:15 am.
RSVP with firstname.lastname@example.org.
Feb. 24: Farewell party with Dayna, Luke, Obie, and Olivia at Tom and Lee's home; details forthcoming;
Just as we are leaving the increasing light of Epiphany and on the edge of Ash Wednesday and Lent, may the light of Christ continue to lead us all, O Pilgrims of the Pilgrim God, Jesus Christ.
Pastors Brett & Chris