The Red Thread

Our journey through Genesis has been going on for a few weeks now and I am enjoying thinking about covenant stories with you. Last Sunday, I told you that there is a red thread running through Scripture, the theme of God’s grace weaves through every story. When we remember that the Bible is a story of God’s love for us and God’s ongoing offer of relationship to us, it helps us not get lost in the weeds, especially when the story is strange and confusing like the story of Jacob and Rachel. It also helps us not get lost in the weeds as we go through struggles in our own lives. I prepare a sermon on paper every week, but I like to preach without a script or notes – I get really boring if I don’t. The danger of that is I sometimes forget side notes, and this week, I forgot an important one. The visual of the red thread comes from the story of Rahab from Joshua 2. Rahab was a prostitute who helped the Hebrew spies defeat their enemies. She was told to hang a scarlet cord in her window. The battle raged outside and her whole city was eventually destroyed, but she was saved by faith. That scarlet rope, that red thread of salvation that serves as a metaphor for God’ love and protection. As I told you, the red thread in every Biblical story, and in our own stories, is connected at either end. God’s love and protection of us stretches back to creation, and it weaves through the Old Testament. It’s the blood...

The Pastor is in, the kids are out.

It is good to be here! I am settling in at my new post as the pastor at Covenant UMC. Last week was “moving week,” a space of time Methodists give pastors to move from one church to another. I was moving on moving week – making a dork of myself in the name of Jesus during VBS. I got to play the role of the goofy zookeeper, Dr. Paws, during each morning’s assembly. The church was full of life and it was a blast to see the kids learning and having fun, and the adults putting in all into place. This week, the kids are all gone and the place is quiet. The youth are gone, too, off to UM Army doing repair projects for people in need. It did my heart good to see my daughter right there in the thick of it. I am taking advantage of the quiet and thinking about sermons for the next few weeks. I am reading some of the covenant stories from the book of Genesis and thinking about what it means to be a church that calls itself Covenant. On my wall is a reminder of what I came here to do – be an agent of joy. It’s covered with notes of encouragement that I have received and pictures that kids have drawn for me. My favorite is this advice: “Laugh as much as you breath.” I’m not sure I can pull that off, but it helps to have a...