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Tuesday Tidings February 26, 2024

Dearest Members of Bethlehem,

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” -Romans 15:13

It’s not easy.  Some days are just tough to get through.  Our energy may be low and our anxiety high.  There may be too many things to worry about and way too much to get accomplished.  Perhaps there have been some disappointments, things are simply not going as you had planned.  And worst of all, it’s tough to find any light among the shadows in this dreary season.  But hope is not lost!

If you need a boost today, or any day, I have something you might try: take a deep breath and consider your surroundings.

This time of year, it can be as simple as keeping an eye out for a newly washed car.  They won’t be hard to spot.  All the salt and grime has been scrubbed away and all that was hidden is now shining forth.    It’s amazing what a little water strategically placed can accomplish, and yep, just like that… a wonderful reminder of our baptisms.  We have been claimed as Children of God, heirs of the kingdom! 

Go into the snack drawer and find something tasty; some like sweet others like salty, but all you need is something that you can savor; something that will bring a smile to your face.  There’s joy, deep joy in being able to relish those flavors, a simple pleasure, and an answer to prayer: our daily bread.

Just open up the window that’s nearest to you.  Even if it’s chilly let the breeze rustle the blinds or curtains.  And maybe, just maybe while that window is open you will hear some birdsong and you can be assured; as surely as the Spirit descended into Christ, “like a dove,” that same Spirit has entered into you.  The Spirit remains with you and has the power to renew our hope.  

How?  The Spirit has the capacity to transform the most common ordinary things into radiant reminders of God’s goodness.  And so, I echo Paul’s prayer, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing.”  

Question for reflection: What would you recommend that we be on the lookout for, something that would remind us of God’s presence and goodness?

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Dan

God of love, our confidence is rooted in faith, we trust in your promises.  Every ending offers the opportunity for a new beginning.  Every challenge is one more opportunity to persevere.  Every failure is an opportunity to grow in wisdom and choose a better path.  Bless us with the power of your Holy Spirit, that we might continue in your life-giving way of hope-filled possibility.  We pray this in the name of Christ our Lord, Amen. 

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