Greetings from the Rector’s Study on Labor Day Sunday. It has been a grand day and the culmination of the last week of “summer” in Southside Virginia. We have been enjoying a slight turn of the season and give thanks that we have been able to avoid interaction with the 10 named storms in the Atlantic this year. We enjoyed having a full house of sorts and having “wee ones” with us – children’s voices in worship are encouraging. Our prayers for those who are joining us in our transition from Summer to Fall.
Our worship today was a continued affirmation of the life of transition which is an offshoot of our life as Christians. Our collect reminded us that God is the source of all good things and that our job as believers is to be nourished by our relationship with God and to invite others to be nourished alongside us. Our reading from Hebrew Scripture in Exodus was God’s call of Moses through the burning bush. Moses is called by God to be intimate with God and to convey God’s message to God’s people. Even when Moses hesitates, God does not relieve him of his mission. Our Psalmist’s song was one that urges us to proclaim God’s graciousness to the world. In that process, we are urged to remember what has happened when God’s followers believed that God would be faithful. Our New Testament lesson from Paul’s letter to the Romans recounts our mission as believers: to tend the sick, feed the hungry, pray for all, and trust that God will lead us.
Our sermon today was based on the gospel account from Matthew of Peter rebuking Jesus for Jesus not being what Peter thought the Messiah should be. Jesus pointed out to Peter that the Messiah’s function is not to rule with an iron fist, but to create community out of diversity. The job Jesus gives to us is not to divide the ins from the outs, but to gather all under God’s gracious umbrella.
I invite your comments,
Readings: Exodus 3:1-15; Psalm 105:1-6, 23-26, 45c; Romans 12:9-21; Matthew 16:21-28
Video of worship: https://youtu.be/5Ns5HFqn4n0
Video of sermon: https://youtu.be/CE7A_fQOM7E