A tributary of the Susquehanna River, the Conewago Creek wraps around the town of East Berlin in eastern Adams County. Many times on my way to York Hospital over the years I have caught a glimpse of the creek on the western side of town, but never took the time to stop. This morning I did. I took the picture at the top of the post (and the one at the bottom). This image of reflection on the water on an otherwise miserable, rainy, cold morning reveals a bit of the the beauty of God's creation. Reflections are images of the original.
As children of God, we have been created in the image of God. Are we then not to be the reflections of the original? Our call is to re-present the priorities and intentions of God. A tall order in deed!
Think of the many relationships that we have. What do they say about who we are? What can we discover about ourselves (or any individual, for that matter) by the relationships that constitute our lives? What is reflected? Is the image of the original obvious, or has it by time and circumstance become distorted or even unrecognizable?
The theme for Sunday's sermon will be Relationships as Reflection. The following texts from scripture will serve as the basis for our exploration of this theme. Seen in the context of our efforts to ground our mission and ministry in the will of God for our life together, we will consider the connections we have with all that God has entrusted to us. Please take a few moments to read and meditate on the following passages:
Moses assembled all the congregation of the Israelites and said to them: These are the things that the LORD has commanded you to do: Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day you shall have a holy sabbath of solemn rest to the LORD; whoever does any work on it shall be put to death. You shall kindle no fire in all your dwellings on the sabbath day.
Moses said to all the congregation of the Israelites: This is the thing that the LORD has commanded: Take from among you an offering to the LORD; let whoever is of a generous heart bring the LORD's offering.
Then all the congregation of the Israelites withdrew from the presence of Moses. And they came, everyone whose heart was stirred, and everyone whose spirit was willing, and brought the LORD's offering to be used for the tent of meeting, and for all its service... (Exodus 35:1-5, 20-21)
And from the gospel of Matthew, Jesus' parable of the talents:
For it is as if a man, going on a journey, summoned his slaves and entrusted his property to them; to one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away.
For to all those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance... (Matthew 25:14-15, 29a)