WRITE A GREAT STORY
There is a sense in which we are the authors of our lives. We write the script. We decide the quality of our main character, the primary plot line of our lives, and the “drama” that will mark our days on this earth. Before I go too far on this, let me assure you that I believe that our triune God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, is the ultimate author of life (Acts 3:15; Hebrews 2:10 and 12:2). God is sovereign and there are many, many things in life we cannot script or control. And yet, in the wisdom of God, God has endowed us with the responsibility and opportunity to play an active role in shaping our lives. This holy, creative tension is captured in Philippians 2:12, 13, “Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him” (New Living Translation). God works in us as we work out (or live out) the implications and application of our salvation.
Are we writing lives of grudges or grace? Blessing or bitterness? Self-centeredness or service? Devotion to God or neglect of God? We have the choice. This applies, obviously, in all aspects of life, but for Trinity, at this time, it is important as we consider our denominational affiliation. Session has requested that Trinity be dismissed with our property from the Presbytery of Los Ranchos and the Presbyterian Church (USA) to the Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterian Churches (ECO). Throughout this process, the session and presbytery and all involved have focused on writing a good story. Steve Yamaguchi, Presbytery Pastor, wrote:
We are at a point where we are being called on to respect one another’s convictions and to give one another the gift of a blessing into two different worlds. I pray that they will be parallel, or even wound together like a double helix, but they are different and we both hear God’s call in it. We each believe God is calling us out to accomplish the mission of Jesus Christ – so please, please do not denigrate one another. When you do that, you embarrass us all. And you bring shame to Jesus who counts on our unity and mutual love to be his witness. All the painstaking work of our Joint Discernment process is not just to avoid a bad story (and there have been many horror stories of bitter separations), but to tell a Good Story – to demonstrate how God’s people can live and work together in the distinctive way of Jesus.
Amen! Let’s continue to write a good, even a great story, by the grace and power of our Risen Lord.
See you in church.