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for God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7 (NRSV)
My friend Joe Jeffreys was ordained yesterday. It was a wonderful service filled with friends and family, great music and an ecumenical clergy-mix which embodied our unity in Christ. An additional highlight of the afternoon was the sermon offered by one of Joe’s long-time friends.
The sermon reflected on Joe’s journey to ordination and that while we were there to celebrate this milestone, the day was not about Joe, it was about God. The preacher asked us to think of the moment of Joe’s ordination as the birthing of something God had planted in Joe many years prior. He likened the moment when God first captured Joe’s attention, to the story of the Angel’s announcement to the Virgin Mary that she would conceive and become the mother of Jesus. A story commonly referred to as the “Annunciation.” (Luke 1:26-38).
I’m inspired by the idea that God’s annunciation is available to everyone. That God is present in the midst of our daily circumstances and seeks our attention. In moments of clarity we can hear the announcements of God and allow them to shape our lives and inform our decisions. Over time, our fidelity to God’s annunciations gives birth to good things in our lives and in the lives of others.
In this season of Lent may you find enough peace and quiet to hear the words God is speaking to you. May you take God’s Word to heart so that you will be filled with a spirit of power and love and self-discipline. May you find joy in knowing that a season of faithful, humble waiting will give birth to a glorious day of resurrection.
Peace, Jim

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