Christ Lutheran Church - Marshfield, WI

Travelling Light

Birds are amazing creatures! Right now, some of my favorite birds, the warblers, are getting ready to head south for the winter. While many people do the same, the trip is much more difficult, to say the least, for tiny little birds who have to fly, some of them, from Canada to South America. To make this journey requires a remarkable conservation of energy. After stocking up on food, they begin. Along the way, some species must traverse the gulf of Mexico in a single evening. The most amazing thing to me is that they absorb their own intestines for fuel. Wow!

I’m very much for “travelling light,” getting rid of things that we don’t need or that just get in the way. However, it’s much easier said than done. Recently, Tom Eggebrecht for the Lutheran Witness wondered if there was one thing that the church needs to let go of in our modern world. Here’s his answer,

"We need to let go of fear. Christians are going to have to stop being afraid. We have to let go of the fear that keeps us from lovingly urging our fellow members to come to church when they have fallen away. Believers must stop shrinking back when it comes to calling out the evil in today’s world and calling a sin a sin, instead of silently letting it harm those it ensnares. Our mouths ought to flow freely with the proclamation of God’s grace that births faith and forgives sinners just like us. Satan is using fear to hold us back and to put a dent in the modern church." (LW, Sept. 5, 2019)

Conversely, many people use fear to try to gain power. Such fear spreads rapidly, carried along on the winds of gossip and manipulation. However, we know from God’s Word that perfect love, God’s love, casts out fear. This love can be taught at home, beginning from infancy. Already at a young age, Eggebrecht notes, we are very capable of learning, memorizing and retaining the very Bible verses from which we draw our strength.

Certainly, overcoming fear is easier said than done, but the Holy Spirit works in us to do it, and it will be accomplished. As fear is driven out, we find that hopelessness is driven away, thoughts are clearer, gossip is quenched, those who cause divisions—including Satan—are thwarted, and the message of the Gospel rings forth ever clearer as the Word of God spreads and is heard in ever-expanding circles.

We are a lampstand. We are a city on a hill. We are the aroma of God. We are the salt of the earth. Let us boldly embrace who we are in Jesus, and let us do it as a family of God, regularly gathered here at our beloved congregation—Christ Lutheran Church!

In Christ’s love, Pastor Daryn
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