Sunday, June 14, 2020
Beavers build dams
We damn so much that God builds
Only the Holy Spirit can show us how love blesses everything and everyone.
You have given them dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under their feet
Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
Words of Grace For Today
God gave humans dominion over the works of God’s hands, over creation, putting all things under our feet.
It is true that we, humans, do appear to be able to work our will over many aspects and creatures in creation. Certainly we do not have dominion over everything in the universe.
Since we pretty much destroy so much of what we attempt to control, perverting even our own good intentions into things terrible beyond imagining (remember how nuclear bombs, declining faithfulness, and pastor shortages came to be), it is probably good we have not mastered the entire universe.
Where we show most fearfully our successes is in our efforts to control and/or destroy other people. Warfare has developed to the point where we can all too easily dispatch a drone to blow up a village, missiles from a plane, ship, submarine, or land based silo that can obliterate whole cities, or suicide bombers to blow up a crowd. Terrorist attacks come by land, sea, air, and cyber means delivering projectile, poisons, explosions. Infamous leaders turn words that have no bearing in reality into deadly weapons, inspiring hate crimes, that invite protests, that are hijacked as violent riots, which in turn are use as excuses for more hate crimes inspired by infamously dangerous and irrational power hungry leaders.
Where did all this hate come from?
From our fearful hearts!
We fear that our share of the pie is disappearing, so we want to blame someone else, instead of take our own responsibility for living lives that demand others destroy air, land, and sea … and people, in order to satisfy our insatiable appetites for things that do not satisfy the soul.
How different Jesus’ life story is, filled with healing words and touches, wise words that reach the soul with truth, actions that demonstrate God’s omi-present, all-powerful, self-sacrificial love.
Be imitators …
not of those who pursue dominion over creation and creatures, especially other people.
Be imitators …
of Jesus, extending love, especially to the strangers, to the ones who is different, to the ones who cannot return our love, to the most vulnerable, to the most needy and to our own selves.
You can tell, in a congregation, who the people are who do not love themselves as God loves them. They always worry and try to make something (usually something impossible) happen according to their own plans. They lie. They cheat. The sow chaos, trying to keep their plans in the dark until the destruction is beyond repair, as if they somehow win with their lies, secrets, and interpretations of constitutions, bylaws, and contracts that are only possible if one suspends normal manners of thinking. While they demand more and more of others, they produce less and less real, loving work. What appears as loving actions is really power games to gain influence in order to rise out of their own chaos as a saviour.
Unfortunately people always follow leaders who create chaos and false fears, like Hottelstedter, who will then say they really had no idea where all the people disappeared to, those the cattle cars carried through their village… on the way to the extermination camps.
One has to pity those who are so fearful that the best they can imagine for the future is to create chaos and false fears to drive people to do irrational and destructive things. Yes! the pitiful have exercised dominion, the kind of dominion the Devil tempts us to, the kind that eats out our own souls and corrupts each piece of creation it touches.
Thank God, Jesus’ love, which the Holy Spirit equips and empowers us to imitate and act out for all people, even the most pitifully corrupt, cannot be overpowered by the Devil and his evil work, no matter the guise they come in. We are not separated from the love of Christ, not even by the Devil himself, not as God’s love flows into us in overwhelming measures, nor as it flows over, around, and through us to everyone around us.
Thanks be to God.
Therefore we pause at all hours, to be astounded with gratitude for all God has done for us.
Therefore we pray each day: may we not forget the over-abundance of God’s Grace and Love which saves us, even from ourselves.
Therefore each day we pray: may this day bring us to share God’s love with those so thirsting and hungry that they succumb to the Devil’s empty promises.
Yes, let us have dominion over all creation, as we imitate Christ, for Jesus’ kind of dominion is to pour God’s unconditional, irrationally prodigal Love and Grace into life around us … at all costs to ourselves.
God has our backs. We need fear nothing.