A Daily Dose of Good News
Thursday, October 1, 2020
Therefore do not let anyone condemn you in matters of food and drink or of observing festivals, new moons, or sabbaths. These are only a shadow of what is to come, but the substance belongs to Christ. Do not let anyone disqualify you, insisting on self-abasement and worship of angels, dwelling on visions, puffed up without cause by a human way of thinking, and not holding fast to the head, from whom the whole body, nourished and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows with a growth that is from God.
If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the universe, why do you live as if you still belonged to the world? Why do you submit to regulations, “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch”? All these regulations refer to things that perish with use; they are simply human commands and teachings. These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-imposed piety, humility, and severe treatment of the body, but they are of no value in checking self-indulgence. (Colossians 2:16-23)
Do Not Let …
The agency of faith afforded to each of the baptized is infinite.
If with Christ [in baptism] you have died
To the [temporary influences] of the universe
[And been raised with him in confidence
Of God’s eternal realm of justice, mercy and love],
Why do you live as if you still belonged to the world?
Why do you submit yourselves to its distorted and chaotic influence and values?
Do not let anyone or anything has unhealthy power over your life like that.
Within the community of Jesus’ first century followers at Colossae,
These sorts of challenges were very real from false religious teachers
And communities of faith which elevated ritualistic traditions
As being essential for righteousness and salvation …
In essence reducing faith in Jesus to a set of right and pure works…
When Jesus’ death and resurrection had revealed the illusion of such self-righteousness
In light of God’s unconditional and eternal regard for all that God has made.
Our church’s practice of baptizing infants is an enduring demonstration of this grace.
Before a child of God has any idea about right and pure works
God claims that child forever.
Then as the child grows, she or he joins the whole community faith,
Living together into God’s eternal grace,
Free from letting anyone or anything have unhealthy power of us.
So do not let advertising and media portrayals of health and beauty
Make you see yourself as anything less than
The beloved child that your creator sees you.
Do not let the political wrangling of the day,
Impactful as it is in the short-term,
Cloud you confidence in the victory that Jesus,
In his death and resurrection, has already won for God’s kingdom.
Do not let the isolation, fear and uncertainty of a pandemic
Throttle your trust in God’s enduring presence with you
In the Word we share today,
The prayers we offer together and
The mutual consolation shared among God’s people.
Do not let discrimination on the basis of race or sex or age or ability or religion
Diminish the ultimate value that God
And God’s eternal and infinite community has for you.
And do not let lapses in your baptismal agency …
When you occasionally succumb
To such pressures and dilemmas in the world around you …
Stop you from offering up you ill feelings to the grace of God in Christ Jesus
Who absolves and invigorates your repentance, never loving you the less.
And if you still feel stuck or down too far,
Please reach out for someone to remind you.
Reach out to a family member or friend.
Reach out to Vicar Sara.
Please reach out to me.
We are here to remind you and stand with you
Within the agency of faith affords to you in your baptism
Offers you assurance and peace amid all the events of your life
Today and every day. Amen.