In our reading from Acts last Sunday, we heard about the Ethiopian eunuch reading the famous passage in Isaiah about the Suffering Servant. Isaiah was talking about the nation of Israel going through suffering, but in his description, Christians have seen an amazing portrayal of the Suffering Servant Jesus who was to come. This Sunday’s gospel reading will highlight the way that Jesus shared in our afflictions through his healing ministry, as we continue the theme of Epiphany/manifestation: Jesus showing his divine strength in the face of grief.
In Bible study this month, we have been studying ways to work through our own suffering after losing someone, through the “tasks of grief” model. Last Sunday we made grief bracelets, and this coming Sunday at 9 AM we will be drawing necklaces to symbolize our journeys of change and corporate loss in the various churches we have been part of. All are welcome to join us! A sweeter sister of Grief is Nostalgia, who opens us to happy memories of those we have lost, so that we can draw strength from their strength. During Lent we will be exploring the history of Elim looking for what sweet Nostalgia can teach us for our future.
In the words of our Bible study author, Bishop Michael Girlinghouse: “Our own nostalgic reflection can help us see how the Holy Spirit was at work among us, the gospel of Jesus Christ was motivating us, and the God who created us and called us was with us in those days. That reflection can give us assurance that God is still with us, even as we acknowledge and grieve what we have lost.”
with love, Pr. Chelsea
–Annual Congregational Meeting and Potluck this Sunday! Chair exercises will resume before coffee hour the following Sunday.
–February 4th will be Scouts Sunday.