Traveling Life's Road
Beloved, I am still so blown away by how you celebrated my birthday on Sunday. Zion Memorial is a loving church family and anyone who is looking for a place to be loved would do well to consider joining with us. And, I know that what you did for me is how you look after and attend to each other. I truly believe your way, our way, is pleasing and a blessing before God. Sadly, such ways of loving and supporting one another is not everyone's way. Some seem to operate as if one upmanship, trying to be better than someone else rather than simply trying to be one's best, is how they will live their lives. Or, others act as if they can operate as solo artists with little to no regard for other people in general or the church specifically. It all leads to broken relationship, distance, distraction, and depression. That is not supposed to be the way of God's people. And, the way of God's people will often have us traveling life's road in a way that makes us unique and distinct. Only then do we have an authentic, impactful, powerful witness in the world. Being like everybody else is a trick of the devil. God has more and expects more from us. What does God expect? Hebrews 10:24-25 gives us a glimpse, "And let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day approaching." First, starting from the end, Jesus is coming back. You need to believe that and you need to live like you believe that. And, because Jesus is coming back, we need to remind each other and encourage each other in knowing that Jesus is coming back. And, in knowing that, Jesus is coming back for His bride, the church, and does not want to find His bride, the church, tattered and scattered, dirty and worn, deficient and neglected. No sane groom would want to see His beloved in such a state. He wants to see His bride, the church, striving, thriving and flourishing in faith in God through Jesus Christ as guided by the Holy Spirit, seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness, trusting that He will cover us, keep us, provide for us, and protect us. That kind of a bride is one that a groom would want to say "I do" too over and over again. And, the evidence that we are believing and trusting is in how we treat one another. Jesus expects for us to earnestly and intentionally seek out the best for others, not just ourselves. The world thinks self first. Jesus wants us to think selfless first and self last. Why? That is what He did and we are supposed to be modeling Him to the world and showing how attractive His love, care and concern truly is. He expects for us to travel life's road making a difference not simply traveling life's road kicking up dust. It is a road less traveled. As Robert Frost put it, often it is The Road Not Taken. Let me share this poem with you, Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth; Then took the other, as just as fair, And having perhaps the better claim, Because it was grassy and wanted wear; Though as for that the passing there Had worn them really about the same, And both that morning equally lay In leaves no step had trodden black. Oh, I kept the first for another day! Yet knowing how way leads on to way, I doubted if I should ever come back. I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood, and I - I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. Beloved, life will present you with forks in the road. One option will be to go left. One option will be to go right. You have to choose. But, what if there was another option? What if God said, "Do not go left. Do not go right." What if God said, "Go with Me." What would you do? Trust me. In traveling life's road, how you decide that is what will make all of the difference. Love God. Love others. Love yourself. Why? Remember that God loves you and I love you too! Be blessed, Rev. Cain P.S. Noonday prayer is today. The sermonic message on The Light is today. In-person worship service is on Sunday. How will you travel life's road? We are waiting to travel with you.