Daily Reflection for 3/16/20
Preston Clegg

2BC Family,

Each weekday, around noon, we hope to offer you a short reflection, just to center us and draw us together as a congregation.  Our hope is that, rather than seeing this as a season of meeting less together, these reflections will prompt us to meet more.  Please join us in praying for each other, our church, our community, and our world in these days.

Below you will find today’s reflection…

In the creation accounts of Genesis, life was created in a great tapestry of togetherness.  Humans were created out of creation and for creation.  We were created out of each other and for each other.  We were created by God and for God.  Life was the joy of existing in this web of connectedness.  What happened to one, happened to all, because there was no other way to be alive. 

 Sin is what we call that which fractures this togetherness.  Sin divides and destroys the web of life.  It causes us to only think of ourselves, rather than all that is connected to us.  Sin values the personal and the private over the communal and the common.  Sin promotes lies that diminish trust.  Sin fosters narcissism that prevents us from seeing our neighbors, much less caring for them.  Sin convinces us that our lives are separate silos of selfishness, set against each other for survival.  Sin sets us above creation (more like gods) than within creation (as creatures).  And sin leads to death- the ultimate separation from the web of relationships.

 I’ve thought a great deal about this in these days of a pandemic.  For so many, what’s best for the common good takes a back seat to their own personal preferences and desires.  To do what’s best for vulnerable people in our midst seems inconsequential when we’re driven by our own plans, agendas, and proclivities.  What’s good for the whole is sacrificed on the altar of what’s good for the self.  

 In our culture, the Christian faith has been so personalized and privatized that it has lost this communal notion of life.  We’ve talked so much about private souls that we’ve lost the public dimensions of our good news.  We’ve proclaimed Jesus so often as a “personal Lord and Savior” that we’ve neglected the notion that he is a cosmic Lord and Savior.  We’ve become so individualized and privatized that, all too often, the tapestry of togetherness and the web of connectedness feels alien to us, as if it has nothing to do with Jesus.  We’ve proclaimed life, without fully recognizing the togetherness that being alive demands of us.

 But in these days, let us be reminded of how connected we are to all people.  People of all faiths and regions and countries and political persuasions and ages and classes and races.  Let us be reminded of how connected we are to creation, second cousins to the dirt.  And even as we are scattered over the area, let us remember that we are all connected to the same God.  This is life in these days.  This has always been life.  This will always be life.  Connection.  Togetherness.  Common humanity.  This is life, abundant and eternal.

 Let’s pray:

 Maker of all that is good and beautiful.  We give you thanks for creating life in all its mutual connectedness.  We pause to give you thanks for those most intimately connected to us [see the faces of your family and friends].  We pause to thank you for those who seem far away from us, for whatever reason, but are also our neighbors.  [See the faces of the vulnerable in our community and those suffering around the world].

 We pause to confess to you the instances in which we’ve pretended as if our lives were siloed from each other, disconnected spheres of existence.  We confess the times we’ve placed our own privilege and gain above what was good for the community.  We confess the times we’ve separated from, when we should have joined together.  We confess the times we’ve neglected the tapestry of shared life together while proclaiming you as God of our private lives.  Forgive us and help us to live your abundant life anew.

 And as we’re separated from so many that we love, strengthen the ties that bind us together.  Renew our commitments to each other.  Revive our concern for the common good, so that we might be weavers of the tapestry and menders of the web of life in these days.

 In the name of the Father who creates life, the Son who binds us together, and the Spirit who sustains us we pray, AMEN.

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