Jesus says: focus on loving God and loving others and your joy will be complete. The Greek root of the word joy is the same as grace--joy is a gift from God, joy is a gift of knowing you are connected to the divine and this connection is not something you earn or win…it is always present with you, if you will just see it, in moments of stress, see your connection with God and with others and your joy will be complete. Joy comes in, fear goes out when we see ourselves as connected.
If you do not read the Bible, you place yourself at the mercy of those who do. The discipline of wrestling with scripture frees you from people who want to impose their reading on you.
A prominent pastor here in Dallas thinks we should build a wall at our southern border. He told the news the Bible says heaven has a wall around it. That’s Revelation 21:12. He didn’t mention there are twelve gates in that wall that never close. That’s Revelation 21:25. If we want to build a wall at the border like the one in the Bible, we’ll have to put big holes in it every few miles.
Many of us Christians have collected a lot of beliefs we’ve been taught and told and even repeated…this season of Lent is a time to sort through what we believe or have been told for so long and decide: which ideas about the faith do we need to keep and which do we need to throw out? This week we are tidying up our clothes or the things we put on God.