Sunday, January 31, 2016

The finish line is in sight

“The finish line is in sight”

It’s only a few more weeks until our Annual Meeting when the pledge campaign is all wrapped up and we take a break from talking about Stewardship.  At least that is the plan, though I really expect to spend time in the coming weeks and months teaching how we are to be good stewards of God’s resources all year.

But honestly, in this uncertain environment, Stewardship for many is an economic issue.  If you had extra money in your family budget, I know you would increase your giving to reflect that.  And I know that if times in your household are dire, there is nothing I could do or say to make you pry a few dollars out of your empty wallet to give to St. Andrew’s.

So, let me say this. God’s love for you will not be diminished because you cannot afford to tithe this year.  It is not a sin to tell Father Mark that times are hard and you need prayers, or help, to help get through the squeeze.  I was reminded recently that the Church has been there for me and it will be there for you when needed because the church is not about money; it’s about love.  God’s love for us is faithful and unchanging and we are the hands and arms that make that love available to all who seek it. 

We are Great Commission people who bring the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus to all who seek it and God will see that, if we act in love, we have what we need to answer our call.  The resources we need to fulfill our ministries to God’s people will be there when needed because we will give and all will be fed.  Please do your part and give what you can for God’s work in the world—no amount is too small.


Father Mark +  

Sunday, January 10, 2016

What he must do to inherit the kingdom of God?

I recently got up in the middle of the night, as is my usual practice, to make a trip to the bathroom. I know there is a chair at the corner where I turn to go into the vanity, but I stubbed my toe on it just the same.

“Darn, I need to put a brighter bulb in that nightlight.”  That dark corner is a menace to my feet.

Have you ever tried to make something ‘less dark’ without adding light?  It doesn’t work that way.  You cannot remove darkness.  You can only add light.

Just as you cannot remove darkness without adding light, and you can’t remove coldness without adding heat, so you can’t remove evil without doing good things.  In this universe there is only good.  Evil does not really exist just as there is no such thing as darkness—only the absence of light makes something dark—there is no evil, only the absence of goodness.

When a rich young man asked Jesus what he must do to inherit the kingdom of God, Jesus replied he must obey the commandments.  The young man replied that he had kept them since his youth.  Then Jesus said to sell everything and give it to the poor, and he went away sad because he had many possessions.

The rich young man had kept God’s commandments by following the law, but Jesus knows that following the law alone, does not make one good.  Living by the law only, and not doing good with our lives, our talents, and our possessions does not drive out evil.  In order to do that we must determine to do good while obeying God’s commandments.


Father Mark +