FROM PASTOR MIKE’S DESK:
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In the movie “The Lion King”, Simba, the rightful king of the Pride Lands, is thought to be dead after he runs away when his father Mufasa dies. Simba runs and tries to forget about his past. In forgetting about his past, he leaves his home, the Pride Lands, behind.
When the crazy monkey Rafiki learns that Simba is not dead but very much alive, he says something which has been going through my head for a while now. Rafiki says … “It is time!”
It is time! Three little words with so much meaning behind them. In the movie, it is time for Simba to realize that he is king and that he needs to rescue the Pride Lands and take his rightful place as king.
It is time! Something we say to our kids when it is time to leave, time to pick up their toys, time to brush their teeth and go to bed.
It is time! Words, in a roundabout way, which the Psalmist speaks in Psalm 84.
“How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God. Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you. Blessed are those whose strength is in you …”
Psalm 84:1,2,4,5 (NIV)
It is time the Psalmist says. Notice how the Psalmist speaks of his strong longing to enter into God’s house to worship Him! His soul, “yearns, even faints” for that privilege, to get to do that again! Even “his heart and flesh cry out” for the living God! He realizes that those who worship God in his temple are “blessed by him and strengthened.” Worship for the Psalmist is both a need and a blessing!
I think we can all share in these sentiments? I have heard countless times from people how happy they are to be back in church again. How happy they are to be able to sing our songs of praise to God, to hear God’s Word, to partake in Holy Communion, to see each other and talk with others. Being in worship, being refreshed and recharged, we are able to face the different challenges of everyday life.
After 16 months of being exiled from normal life … It is time! It is time, it is past time to enter into the dwelling place, the sanctuary, the safe haven, the court of our Lord. It’s time to join our brothers and sisters in Christ, support them in their needs, to hear God’s word of forgiveness, to be strengthened in our faith, and to be blessed by our gracious God.
Within the pages of this newsletter you will find the most recent modifications to our Covid-19 guidelines. You will also see that there is a lot going on this summer, especially in the area of Youth Ministry. But there are still a lot of other areas around church in which we could use your help.
Let’s not forget who we are. We are children of God, brothers and sisters in Christ, a place where friends become family. It is time! It is time to embrace our identity! It is time to not run away or to the couch for worship but to return, to enter God’s house with thanksgiving. It’s time again to graciously worship God as we serve Him and our neighbors.
As we continue to serve our gracious God, may we do so always bringing glory and honor to Him alone in all we say, do and think! God’s blessings to you and may you have a great summer. We’ll see you around!