Yesterday, our son returned home after another year away at college. One of the delights of having him around is discovering all the ways he has been changed. Some of these changes are the natural result of growing a little older and more independent. Others are because he’s being shaped by the new experiences he’s having, the classes he’s taking, and the many new relationships he’s forming.
To take advantage of a moment like the first time you leave home, is a common occurrence. It’s one of life’s inflection points, when it feels possible to reinvent yourself. Before our daughter left for college, she cut her hair to the shortest it’s ever been (and her adorable head is forever memorialized in the church directory). No doubt this too was an act of reinvention and marked a real turning point in her life, setting the stage for the next delightful version of her to share with the world.
As she was reflecting yesterday on this coming Sunday’s reading from Galatians, Pastor Ruth reminded us that we all carry unique identifying qualities but that which makes us unique shouldn’t separate us from one another. Because we are all united by the Spirit in Jesus, God’s love for us becomes the undeniable and unchangeable identifier that can never be shaken off.
I hope our children know that as they continue to undergo all these identity shifts and trials, they’ll never be able to shake the central truth of who they are as our beloved children. Just as they, and you and I, cannot change the truth of who we are as beloved children of God.
May God’s peace find you this day. -Pastor Peter
Let us pray:
Gracious God, help us to explore all that we can be for the sake of your world. And through your Spirit, reassure us that the truth of who you have made us to be is unchangeably loved, in the name of Jesus. Amen.