Thanks again to Dr. Girvin – to our choir – and our instrumentalists who are helping to lead our worship this morning.
It’s probably been nearly 20 years that we’ve celebrated Rally Day with a New Orleans liturgy. It’s become a wonderful Rally Day tradition as we start a new program year.
At the last of our regular Forum programs in the spring, Pastor Mac and I talked about our new yearlong theme – “Together in Hope.” During our conversation, we talked about a 10-year plan…and in those first days after he died, I couldn’t help but shake my head, thinking back on that conversation and about those plans.
A week after Houston and the Gulf Region were hit by Hurricane Harvey, Texans are still reeling… Devastating floods. Overcrowded, inadequate shelters. People taking advantage of the most vulnerable – those marginalized by circumstance, by their situation.
There’s a great line in our lesson from Jeremiah this morning – there in verse 17, “…under the weight of your hand (God), I sat alone, filled with indignation.”
That’s the theme that runs through our lessons today. In a world where we so desperately struggle to fit in, God’s Word today calls us to stand out and stand up for the Gospel; for Christ; for the hurting world that surrounds us. And understand, that when we do, it’s not going to make people happy. Because the powerful, the rich, the comfortable, want to keep it that way.
Time moves on and changes us. We’ve reached a point in the last weeks of summer where we’re ready to move ahead. We’re getting ready to gear up for fall. Certainly, the weather these past few days reminds us that change is right around the corner.
This time of year for many of us is a turning point. We’re either excited or dreading the early weeks of September – going back to school or getting kids ready to go. Maybe packing up college aged kids…. Getting ready for all sorts of new beginnings… For some, maybe many of those kids, they’re not as excited as their parents, though.
Time gives us a perspective on life. Looking back, we have reminders of God’s help and God’s care in our lives. There’s the opportunity to be reminded of how blessed we are, despite challenges and setbacks; despite those difficult times. And what is special, is to be able to see how God is with us in those difficult days and weeks. Throughout all our difficult times. Throughout all life’s challenges.