Lenten Reflection 3-24-22

Lenten Reflection Day 20 - by Kim Wu

James 2:1-5 My brothers and sisters, do you with your acts of favoritism really believe in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ?  For if a person with gold rings and in fine clothes comes into your assembly, and if a poor person in dirty clothes also comes in, and if you take notice of the one wearing the fine clothes and say, “Have a seat here, please,” while to the one who is poor you say, “Stand there,” or, “Sit at my feet,” have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts?  Listen, my beloved brothers and sisters, Has not God chosen the poor in the world to be rich in faith and to be heirs of the kingdom that he has promised to those who love him?

The Christian community is a place of radical belonging.

The world pushes us to fit in, to become the people we need to be so that we are accepted.  But the Christian community pushes us to be who we are – children of God – rather than change who we are.

Brene Brown, in her book, “The Gifts of Imperfection,” describes belonging this way:  “Belonging is the innate human desire to be part of something larger than us.  Because this yearning is so primal, we often try to acquire it by fitting in and by seeking approval, which are not only hollow substitutes for belonging, but often barriers to it.  Because true belonging only happens when we present our authentic, imperfect selves to the world, our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.”

God created us for community – with Himself, and with others.  Jesus practiced radical inclusion, spending much of his time with those the world did not value, those who did not fit in.  The poor, the marginalized, the hurting. And when we first belong, it is then that we are able to become the people God intended us to be.

Lord Jesus, who invites us to be God’s very own, his holy people.  We pray for the Father’s mercies and peace.  May we be mirrors that brightly reflect Your glory, and may the Holy Spirit work within us, so that we become more and more like You.  Amen (Based on Romans 1:6 and 2 Corinthians 3:18, TLB)

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