St. Paul's Ev. Lutheran Church & School
TWENTIETH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST
The Lord has "planted a vineyard," giving us his Word and sacraments to bring us to faith and keep us in faith. Through these means of grace, our gracious Father gives us everything we need to thrive spiritually in a sin-darkened world. He patiently waits for us to produce the fruits of faith, the evidence that there is saving faith in our hearts, faith that connects us to Christ our Savior. For 140 years we have been blessed with a Lutheran elementary school to help our congregation to grow and mature in Jesus. May we never take for granted these blessings for our souls, these blessings that mean life for us.
Daily Devotion - Tuesday, October 20, 2020
Maybe you've seen stories about people wearing t-shirts or hats or posting yard signs supporting one political candidate or another and how doing so initiates confrontations or a full-blown battle. Some have taken to putting booby-traps on their yard signs--one person needed several stitches after trying to steal someone's yard sign, not realizing there were razor blades taped all around the edge.
What are you doing to prepare for battle? What are you wearing? A t-shirt that you know will get your neighbor mad? An angry look that you can direct at your co-worker whose political views and life choices seem so extreme? Your conceal/carry weapon, just in case things take a bad turn and you have to physically defend yourself?
We live in a land with many freedoms. You are free to wear any of the things I mentioned and may even feel you have good reason to wear one or the other, but check your motive. Remember who you are. Remember what kind of freedom you have in Christ.
You have the freedom to live in love, without fear. You have the freedom to express yourself with noble goals: to help others, encourage them, enlighten them, or show them love or mercy. You have the freedom to live differently than other people, viewing those whose views you can't agree with not as the enemy but as souls for whom Jesus died--Jesus, who is needed by you no less than he's needed by them.
As you look through your closet and dresser drawers for something to wear this week, also look to Jesus. Because you have been forgiven all your sins, because you've been renewed in heart, mind, and spirit by his love, you can get dressed with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. You can do so with the goal of showing your neighbor something different, something that will bless them and even point them to Jesus.