On Sunday we attended church and although sometimes it feels like a chore to get ready in the morning, going to church is better than skipping it. Popping into the store after church to make a plan for lunch almost feels like a holy endeavour for attending church beforehand.
In sum, the pastor took us to Paul’s letter to the Ephesians:
“1 Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. 2 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us* and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.
3 Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. 4 Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God. 5 You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.” (NLT)
Perhaps Paul has to remind Christians of this because it’s so easy and natural to be consumed with the world while ignoring God until we need to get bailed out of a situation.
I have been following the election season very closely. Its historic and one day my kids or grandkids may ask me about it and I want to be well informed. This is reflected in my Twitter feed, but the Twitter users that I follow are split between the secular (and political) and the spiritual, from John Piper and Franklin Graham to Ann Coulter and Trump himself.
The election season is still producing fevers and TDS (Trump derangement syndrome), tensions and emotions are still high and along with the most histrionic impulses, the temptation is there to lose perspective. For all the partisanship, Trump will take his oath on two Bibles including one belonging to Lincoln, who presided over a divided nation after the end of a civil war. There’s lots of irony there.
Mike Pence will take his oath while resting his hand on Reagan’s Bible open to 2 Chronicles 7: 14:
“14 Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” (NLT)
It might occur to the thousands of protestors expected to show up, as well as the 50+ Democrat senators expected to stay away, that a country is not merely a political arrangement, but a people living their destiny before the eyes of God. A country is a spiritual thing and for a nation that turns back to God, as America needs to do, that nation will be blessed.
And I suppose we should also remember that we are citizens of a heavenly kingdom – with dual citizenship. And that in 100 years, these momentous times will be a footnote in the books and we will all know a different and surer reality beyond the veil.
In light of that, some questions from the passage (Ephesians 5:1 – 20):
How will you respond to God?
Are you truly a child of God?
Are you sexually pure?
Are you impure in any way?
Are you greedy?
If so, what are you going to do about it?
Are you thankful?
Are you playing in the dark?
Are you trying to find out what pleases God?
Are you filled with the Spirit?
Are you praising God?