Jeremiah 33 14:16
Luke 21 25:36
Amanda and Tim led worship on 2 December.
Draw what you see not what you know is common advice from art teachers.
What do we see and then how does our faith equip us to deal with the world around us.
These apopolypitic texts were used to inspire the down trodden minorities.
Yet these are quoted by the majority, the placard wavers in cities. Somehow they want us to retreat into a cosy Christian retreat. Martin Luthor King a much better preacher according to Tim, gives a much closer view to Jeremiah . Jeremiah is improsoned yet those things he was imprisoned for are coming true. Jeremiah bought a piece of land, a crazy act when you’re about to be invaded. But the prophet knows things will be restored, the line of kings will be restored, an image of joy and hope.
Jeremiah puts out a message of hope. The davidic line was not restored as kings but this came to show the coming of the Lord. The message in Luke resembles Mark 13. In Luke we see things that were written decades after Mark. The times change in the Roman Empire. Tim reflected on our brother Peter’s funeral on Thursday. Peter wanted to be taken up in the clouds rather than the normal way of passing. The longing in the early Christians is for Jesus return. Luke used the image of the fig tree to reflect the growing discipleship. We’re advent people not Christmas people, called to speak hope, to be a prophetic community, to live counter culturally to those around us, there are dark silhouettes of bare trees yet you can see on the trees the next buds are there waiting to spring to life, decay leading to new life.
Where do we see that decay in life around us. Do we see the signs? Our instinct tells us to run for cover year Jesus tells us to stand up and be beacons of hope. Respond to what we see in faith and hope. Nelson Mandela, Malala.. there were targets yet became beacons of hope across all nations.
How might we be beacons of hope? How might we react to what we see and become something new.
Neither prophet or gospel writer wants us watching the clock. The new eta will happen in gods time.
What do you see happening in our works. Luke mentions redemption only once. It’s active hope , we know where this going, this is a call to discipleship. This year more than any other we need to say what needs to said and act. Christmas will come and go but we are advent people. The branch has sprouted. Tim closed with a poem from Denise Lebitov
It’s when we face for a moment
the worst our kind can do, and shudder to know
the taint in our own selves, that awe
cracks the mind’s shell and enters the heart:
not to a flower, not to a dolphin,
to no innocent form
but to this creature vainly sure
it and no other is god-like, God
(out of compassion for our ugly
failure to evolve) entrusts,
as guest, as brother,