This weekend, we begin a little side-trip into the first letter of John. Of all the epistles (big Greek word for “letter”), John’s letters share perhaps the most direct themes with one of the gospels, in this case the gospel of John, because they were written by the same school of writers. We will be on this little getaway for the next two weeks to see what we can see.

In this first section, we will be looking more closely at what it means to believe in Jesus’s name and to truly love as Christ has loved. Both are topics we have examined slightly before, but they always bear another look.

Especially in our world today, it is worth considering, with great care, how Christ has called us to love as God has loved us. Among the things we will learn this weekend is that loving in this way is always more than words – it is always concrete. Tangible. Active in this life.

We will also be reminded that hatred is never acceptable for those who would follow Christ. In any form. Most especially toward another child of God, any human on this earth who bears God’s own image.

So, as we get ready to worship this weekend, a good place to begin, a question to ask in preparation would be: where are those places within myself that I hold onto hate or where do I give lip-service instead of real love?

Remember, confession is good for the soul and all of us have missed the mark. What is more, only when we have realized our missteps can we begin to do better.

See you soon!

Blessings, Pastor Janie

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