posted Monday through Friday
Taking the Bus
My brother Eric has been active in local politics in his community for a while. A few years back he decided to step up and serve as an elected representative to his city council. Eric really seems to enjoy this work of helping his local government be a positive force in the lives of his neighbors. And he is well aware of the messiness of political work, often confronted by competing interests.
A few years ago, we were talking about the dynamics of how compromise is a necessary component to progress in political environments. Eric said, “politics is like taking the city bus.” He went on to explain that the bus rarely takes you exactly where you want to go but if you’ve chosen the right bus, it will get you moving in the right direction, maybe even close enough to arrive at your destination.
What I appreciate about this analogy is how it speaks to the realities of life lived in community. Driving your car directly to your desired destination might be great if only you or a couple others need to get there. But when you need to move a whole community of people somewhere, you’re going to have to ride the bus together.
Further, we place faith in the transit authorities and the bus driver to determine a safe and reliable pathway for the bus to take. We trust they’ve used their skills and abilities for the sake of those they’re charged with carrying to their destination. And that destination is rarely exactly where any one individual wants it to be but rather a mutually beneficial spot that serves as many as possible.
Isn’t this also true of life in the church? Being active in the Body of Christ, participating in its work and sharing in its benefits, means leaving the car in the garage and riding the bus. And, as Jesus described in our worship reading yesterday, the only truly bad choice, is not to get on the bus at all. There are so many possible destinations and plenty of busses headed out. Why not get on the bus that will take you towards the place you’re hoping to be?
May God’s hope embrace you today. -Pastor Peter
Let us pray… Moving God, you have called us into a community and set a vision before us. Restrain our individual desires to set a course but seek out instead a common path enabling more and more to make their way to where you are calling us to be. Amen.
The Talented Servants
As a legacy from Reformer Martin Luther, we as Lutherans recognize that nothing we do will earn us a place in heaven, but God reaches out to us even though we don’t deserve it. We are saved by God’s grace through faith. Our relationship with God changes us and we become better people.
Multiplying and Making Real
Iringa Hope, our Bega Kwa Bega affiliated ministry partner, has created a powerful way for our brothers and sisters in Tanzania to invest their modest resources cooperatively into their communities and create real transformation in the process. Using the model of “micro-financing,” similar to the savings & loans systems that pre-existed modern banking, local cooperatives trained and supported by Iringa Hope are providing the financial services that are lacking in the mostly rural areas of central Tanzania.
Corned Beef and a Pint
oday’s is St. Patrick’s Day. Even though we might equate a celebration of Patrick as a saint in the Roman Catholic tradition, Lutherans are also keen to remember his life and witness by including him in our “official” annual commemorations. Patrick, after all, lived as a missionary and bishop in 5th century Ireland, almost 1000 years before the reformation.
Ok, now the tough question. While I talk about others…..what about me?
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