Trinity United Church
July 26, 2020
Eighth Sunday after Pentecost
Anjanee Gyan-Dyck, LLWL
Genesis 29: 15-28
Psalm 105: 1-11, 45b
Romans 8: 26-39
Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52
Loving Spirit, help me to remember that in the midst of the greatest storm is the centre of calmness and in the midst of my heart You are there. Lord, cleanse my heart and mind from all resentments and make me whole. It is only in your wholeness that your love can blossom. Illumine me with your light and love so I can serve you from the pureness of truth. Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer. Amen
This morning I picked the first six very ripe red plum tomatoes from the plant on my deck. I washed them and took them to my small sanctuary and thanked God for this simple miracle from seed to fruit. I needed to share this so I added it to some soup for my grandson. In this sharing with my family, I thought of how Rev. Paula must have also felt in sharing her garden produce with me. It is indeed a blessing to feel loved by family and friends who become family over time.
In today’s Genesis reading, we see the building up of Jacob’s family and the hand of God at work. I lost count of how many wives Jacob had and how many children he fathered with them. What is important is that throughout the years that Jacob served Laban to get what he wanted, God was always there. Eventually, we see the birth of Joseph who was instrumental in helping the children of Israel in their freedom from slavery and departure from Egypt. Without God in the midst of Jacob’s life, there would be no meaning and no fulfillment in his activities and no purpose for the will of God to take place.
As a Trinity United Church family, many of us have been together for a long time. We have been blessed with the bond of friendship and love. We know this to be true in the honest, loving way we respect and treat each other in front of their faces and behind their backs. These challenging days are most difficult to share ourselves with family and friends. But love is the creative force and cohesive element even when we are far away from each other.
The COVID-19 virus continues to change our lives in ways we are still trying to reflect on and untangle. Day-by-day we witness thousands of deaths and tens of thousands of disease cases. A horrifying consequence of contracting this virus is the damage to various parts of the internal body even after a person gets better.
It is unimaginable suffering. Our world-wide dependency on science and technology do not seem to have any type of vaccine even in the near future. In addition, riots, uprisings, and bloodshed are the daily hour-by- hour news. We see areas in cities being looted, ravaged, burned, and destroyed. Not even any kind of science and technology can solve or prevent this human evil that seems to be everywhere. Yet, through these unprecedented times, we witness the hand of God working through it all for human good.
All over the world there is a common call to stay at home to avoid contracting this airborne disease. This precious time is given to us. It is not a time to idle away in material madness or waste it in outward worldly things. God calls us now to return to Him in a collective spirit: “Come closer to me my children. I am the only One whom you truly have. I am eternally seated in your heart. Only you can focus your mind on me, the Living Christ.” We know this to be true because once we connect to Him, we are able to feel His presence. This is evident in Paul’s Letter to the Romans.
Paul describes the power of God’s Holy Spirit in us and the new life in union with Christ when we connect to God within. In verse 23, Paul explains that the Spirit is the first of God’s gifts to us. This is the Spirit of real Love. Today, we have no excuse for finding God. We do not have to go on pilgrimages. We do not have to advertise or shout to show how much we love God. This is not a time for lectures or words or to prove how religious we are.
This is a time for only you and God; a time for your inner Christ journey of meditation. This is a time for your own Gethsemane. This is a time for family to walk alone at home with Christ. “Only in the degree that you live consciously in the realization of God and let this realization of God dwell in you does it become true that you do not live alone—that the very place you stand is holy ground, for God is with you and He will never leave you nor forsake you.”
To bring divine awareness into our human consciousness, we must outgrow any kind of limited conventional conceptions. Meeting the divine joy of the Infinite Christ in the altar of our heart is the only way to touch his hem now and always. Christ, the Universal Intelligence of all creation is the joy of meditation.
Paul reminds the early church family that nothing can separate us from God because we have in our heart Christ Jesus. As the family of God, we must seek out His Kingdom of Heaven within for it is there that Love flourishes. It is only in this inner journey that each one of us can help make this a reality on earth. We may have the mustard seeds in hand, but if we do not plant one seed, how can it grow into a tree for the birds to nest. Similarly, we may have the yeast on hand but if we do not mix with the sugar and flour, how can there be bread to eat?
“Our current world-dilemma is but a very real magnification of humanity’s inner state.” The Christ within cannot be fooled. He knows our good and bad thoughts and actions. Paul states that “when the time of reaping comes, God’s people will shine like the sun in their Father’s kingdom.” God has blessed us in this pandemic to turn to Him.
We at Trinity are a family of God. As a collective spirit with Him, we provide a strong, positive vibrational energy that can help ease the intensity of the COVID-19 virus, hasten the discovery of a vaccine and change the blights of unnecessary bloodshed to healing and restoration of our world. The time for truly connecting with God is now. His Love is the only answer. AMEN
“THIS TOO WILL PASS AWAY:
If I can endure for this minute
Whatever is happening to me,
No matter how heavy my heart is
Or how “dark” the moment may be—
If I can remain calm and quiet
With all my world crashing about me,
Secure in the knowledge God loves me
When everyone else seems to doubt me—
If I can but keep on believing
What I know in my heart to be true,
That “darkness will fade in the morning”
And that this will pass away, too—
Then nothing in life can defeat me
For as long as this knowledge remains
I can suffer whatever is happening
For I know God will break “all the chains”
That are binding me tight in “the Darkness”
And trying to fill me with fear—
For there is no night without dawning
and I know that “my morning” is near.
Helen Steiner Rice. (1968). Heart Gifts. Fleming H. Revell Company.
Moira Timms. (1980) Coming Changes. Orenda/Unity Press.