But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.1 Peter 2:9-10
Good Tuesday morning, friends. There is change in the air and it’s not just the refreshing October air. I can only feel hopeful in response.
Today, for example, Rebekah is at the church, meeting her staff “live and in person” rather than spending all morning on Zoom. Then tomorrow evening the Wednesday men’s group will be actually inside the building when we gather!
This follows the recent series of baptisms in the sanctuary (four services in the past two weeks), and anticipates several more limited gatherings for the purpose of receiving a large class of confirmands.
Then, yesterday, I experienced the great privilege of another day on the golf course (Scotfield CC) with actual, real, flesh and blood people! Not just people, but really good ones at that!
This Fact of Being:
More and more the year 2020 is bringing home this distinct, critically important message – a truth foundational to humanity and of critical importance if we are to survive and thrive as a species – and that is the fact that we were, are, and always will be created and recreated with the goal of love-saturated community in mind.
This is a fact of being that is seriously overlooked and critically underserved in society. Community is a vital part of what it means to be human, and a positive engagement with and experience of community is a key element to health across the board. Mental health, spiritual health, physical health – wellbeing in general.
Let me put it this way: inasmuch as I understand and then live into the foundational/root/essential/first purpose of my creation… then I am more completely equipped to enjoy it. And the scriptures are consistently clear that God created us for community, both with God’s self and with one another.
The first question of the Westminster Shorter Catechism affirms that our chief purpose as human beings is, “to glorify God and to enjoy God for ever.” I would argue that we are better positioned to love God when we are in proper relationship with God and with one another, and that joy flows out of experiencing (understanding, owning, sharing) God’s love.
We were not created in isolation and we were/are not purposed in isolation.
Therefore (ergo, it naturally follows that) these small steps toward experiencing in-person community are a cause for celebration and of joy.
So hugs – virtual ones, for now – to all of you; and love, the love that heals – DEREK
- A few pics from golf over at Scotfield (Scotland Neck) Monday
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.