Heritage: Builders of the Faith

Sunday’s Scripture ~ Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Psalm 127

This Sunday at Reeves we begin our Heritage series.  I felt led to share this series because the congregation is just about half and half.

  • Half the people have been here for years!  Their children – and some even their grandchildren – have grown up in this congregation.  They know the stories, they know the people, they are and continue the story!
  • Half the people are new – joining the church within the last few years.  They have heard bits and pieces of the story, and now as members of the story, I think it’s important they hear the whole story so the story will continue.

(And as a companion for this period of the journey, I reckon I should know the stories!)

So we celebrate Heritage at Reeves – looking at who this congregation is, looking at where we have been, and anticipating – alongside God – where we are going.

Psalm 127 speaks of the spiritual construction of houses while Deuteronomy 6:4-9 speaks of the spiritual instruction that takes place in the houses.

I remember when I was in the sixth grade my parents sold our home on the southside of town to build a new home on the northside of town.  For 6 long months (I think it was 6…it felt like 6…years…) I slept on the couch in the two-bedroom apartment our family rented.

My big brother got the bedroom…but I got the closet!

Hah!  Priorities folks…priorities!

During that time of transition from one house to another I felt very out of place…like I was in everyone’s way.  Since I slept on the couch, if people were watching TV and I wanted to go to sleep, someone had to move…either they ended their program-viewing early or I curled up under the dining room table. I didn’t have a space that was mine to order – from where things went to what went on in there.  I was completely dependent on someone else…someone over me had the say and final word…and I didn’t like it.

Yet as I read these passages…I become more aware that nothing in this world is mine to order solely on my own…and if I attempted, it would all be in vain.  What is mine to order is mine because God gifted me that ability, that opportunity, that responsibility.

Like the lyrics from Casting Crowns, “Not because of who I am, but because of what you’ve done.  Not because of what I’ve done, but because of who you are.”

God creates the space.  God gifts the space.  God invites me into the space.  To God be the glory.

And if I feel out of place in that space…well…I think that is an indicator I need to get back to the business of proper spiritual instruction.

Proverbs 14:1 and 11 read, “The wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands…The house of the wicked is destroyed, but the tent of the upright flourishes.”  The wise person builds if she does so pursing the heart of her Creator; God will make her dwelling flourish.

God will make your dwelling flourish.  Invite God to order and craft your space.

Prayer: “Happy are they whose hopes rely on Israel’s God, who made the sky and earth and seas, with all their train; whose truth forever stands secure, who saves the oppressed and feed the poor, for none shall find God’s promise vain.” Amen.*

*from “I’ll Praise My Maker While I’ve Breath” from The United Methodist Hymnal Book of Worship, 60.  

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