I’ll end by returning to where we started—talking about the church year. I like how this Season after Pentecost roughly corresponds to the growing season in our northern hemisphere. And being in this rural community, it’s easy to witness just how difficult it is to grow things. Several years I’ve noticed that farmers have had difficulty getting crops in because of too much rain in the early part of the season, only to be faced with the loss of that same crop later because of drought late in the season. I’ve thought also of the force, drive, and energy it takes for a tiny seed to shoot up a tiny tendril that manages to plow through several inches of dirt just to make it to the surface, let alone survive gnawing critters in order to reach maturity. And that’s what this Season after Pentecost is about: the struggle, hope, and faith it takes to grow. Let’s continue to grow together this season, encouraging each other to be Christ to and see Christ in each other and in our neighbors—that’s all we need to do to make disciples because being Christ and seeing Christ is one way that Jesus is with us “always, to the end of the age”. Amen.
A 4 year-old boy was learning to pray the Lord’s Prayer. He began: “Our Father, who art in Heaven: How do you know my name?” I’m wondering: Can you think of an instance in your life when you had at least a sneaking suspicion, or maybe it was crystal clear to you, that God knows YOUR name? That God the Spirit was reaching out to you and waiting for you to recognize this and respond?
All baptisms are miraculous events, for it is a moment of joining heaven and earth; when we choose and bind ourselves to God, and God to us in a brand new way, and we are formed into a holy union, the bonds of which can never be broken.