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Dearest Members of Bethlehem,

“The heavens are telling the glory of God…” -Psalm 19:1

Just a few weeks ago NASA published images of our universe that just happened to be about 13 billion light years away. Maybe you have seen those images and maybe you have not, but let me assure you… the Webb Space Telescope has generated pictures that will take your breath away.

What we are seeing is a universe more vast than we might have ever imagined. And alongside the grandeur there is a temptation.

It may be the quintessential temptation, to assume that we are (individually, mind you) the very center of the universe. Growing up, maturing, embracing a meaningful spirituality means that eventually we disabuse ourselves of this conviction and embrace a glorious bit of good news.

God, is still creating. The universe is expanding at an astonishing rate. And we are privileged to dwell in our corner of the cosmos.

Perhaps the psalmist had a sense of this humbling perspective when the psalmist asked, “what are humans that you are mindful of them?”

As striking as that question might be, there is another uplifting refrain that follows, “Yet you have made them a little lower than God, and crowned them with glory and honor.” -Psalm 8:4-5

If you’re reading the psalm carefully, you will discover this “crowning” is still God’s work. The same Creator that is busy expanding space and time, is actively emboldening you with light and life. As we peer out at the vastness of space, we may be inspired… not only by the beauty and majesty of it all, but also by the knowledge that there is a bit of that Divine expansiveness in each of us.

Just as the cosmos continues to grow, so too, you and I… by the grace of God, continue our growth and expansion as believers and agents of God’s grace.

Question for reflection: What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you look to the night sky?

This week at Bethlehem:

On Wednesday evening we will gather for Fit Church at the Latrobe Shelter in North Park at 6:30. Please consider joining us as we are close to winding up Fit Church for the season. The Safety Committee will also be meeting on Wednesday evening at 7:00

On Saturday evening we will have worship at 6:00.

On Sunday morning we will offer worship at 8:00 and 9:30.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Dan

God of hope, when we feel lost and alone, send your Spirit to guide us back to you and those we love. We pray that our community would be a source of strength for those who are struggling in body, mind, or spirit. We pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.

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