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Spoiler Alert!!! – There is more “keeping awake” coming!
If you are a church nerd, you might know that this time of year, when we are all constantly raking leaves and watching the Bills lose in gut wrenching fashion, is also the Church Year End and the soon arriving Church New Year in the start of Advent.
And the way that the preaching schedule falls at St. Paul’s with me preaching three of the next four weeks (including last week), all the texts are encouraging and even ending with: Keep Awake.
Keep Awake for the end times. Keep Awake for the Kingdom of God breaking in. Keep Awake for Christ coming again. That seems like a forceful mandate right? “A little pushy this month God! How about you lighten up?”
That’s a lot of keeping awake. So maybe we should put on another cup of spiritual coffee and get after that!?
Because at the same time as we hear this, we acknowledged and prayed for yesterday at our Church Unleashed shoot that it is challenging to be joyful in and amongst the weariness of the current world. The wars. The terrorism. The fights in Congress. The overdoses. The deaths too soon. The cancer diagnoses. The challenges with finances. The hunger people are experiencing.
So maybe the continual push to keep awake isn’t a forceful mandate? Maybe it’s a gift.
Keep awake to God’s presence. Keep awake to the promise of Easter over death itself. Keep awake to the Holy Spirit walking with you. Keep awake to the Christian community of church wrapped around you. Keep awake to the food arriving that nourishes. Keep awake to the meal on the altar that promises.
Keep awake….I guess…needs to be repeated a few times then. Because it’s a gift during the weariness.
So go ahead Bills, play well and hopefully don’t yank our hearts out next weekend. But if you do, we will keep awake during that….and the rest…to God’s eternal love for us.
Lord, let’s pour another cup of coffee together and look around. Amen
Still in One Peace