Pastors corner for the week of October 16, 2016
Not Until You Bless Me
Our scripture last Sunday was Genesis 32; the story of Jacob wrestling with God or an angel. It is a great opportunity for us to read all of Jacob’s story and refresh our memory of who he was. Jacob is a part of the “big three” in the Old Testament; Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Yes that Jacob. However the Jacob we meet in this story is not the man who became a part of the patriarchs of faith, well at least not yet. Jacob had doubts about who God was. He was not connected to the God of Abraham and Isaac but God knew who he was. I want you to think about that for a moment. Let’s put ourselves in this story. Are we connected to God or is God the God of someone else? I believe we have moments on our journey of faith when we do not feel connected to God nor do we want to be. And we struggle or we wrestle with ourselves, other people and with God just as Jacob did.
Jacob came to a defining moment in his life. He made a stand. Jacob decided to fight for and wrestle until he received his blessing; he said, “I am not going to let go until you bless me.” I think we need to gather some of the courage Jacob had and firmly tell God the same. What do we think the blessing was? I believe there were several blessings for Jacob. The first blessing was his name was changed to “Israel.” God had always seen Jacob as Israel but a transformation and surrender needed to occur so Jacob could see himself in the way God saw him. The other blessings are there as well but go read the rest of the story and see for yourself.
So today, what are we wrestling with? Are there places in our lives where we simply need to surrender, stop asking why something happened to us? Let’s surrender, stop asking why something happened to us? Let’s surrender all that we are wrestling with to God and allow God to transform us into the person God created us to be.
May it be so.
This is a quick reminder that the Pastoral Search Congregation Survey will be available online on Sunday, 9 October and running to Saturday, 22 October 2016.
If you are receiving this email and wish to participate in the survey, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have not already done so. Enter your name in the subject line and your email address in the body of the email.
Computer access will be made available for individuals who do not have an internet connection or a computer. Some individuals have indicated that they are quite uncomfortable using computers; if you fall within this category, we can provide you with a paper version of the survey to complete.
Please, see Janine on Sunday and give her your information and specifics about whether you need computer access, a paper copy of the survey or if you have a preferred email address to use for the survey.
If you know of someone who may fit into the above categories and they are not aware of the survey, please contact us and let us know by Wednesday, 12 October.
Thank you for taking the time to participate in the Survey
Pastoral Search Team
SunCoast Cathedral MCC
Pastors corner for the week of September 25, 2016
The Long and Winding Road
As we explore the message of Jeremiah, whose prophetic ministry encompasses the time of Israel and Judah’s exile, we find that it is a difficult time in history for Yahweh’s people. After much chastising and lamenting, Jeremiah offers poetic language in chapters 30 and 31 to bring messages of encouragement and hope.
Various communities over time have identified with Israel’s period of exile. At times in our personal lives we may experience feelings of separation and exile. At times in our church lives, especially during transition, we may feel that our church is in exile.
The message of hope reminds us that at the end of the long and winding road we will arrive. “Going home” is not always easy, as things may be different when we arrive. Familiar faces may be gone, surroundings are altered, and we have changed personally as the result of our journey. However, in a metaphorical sense, going home is what we are called to do…being at one with God, our community and ourselves. It is a life-long road trip, and sometimes we end up at places we never expected, but with the help of God and others, together we can make the adventure.
Rev. Vickie Miller