So we have known and believe the love God has for us.
1 John 4:16 (NRSV)
It’s very easy to walk on a wire if you spend a whole lifetime practicing for it.
What is the difference between walking on a tight rope 1 foot above the ground vs, say, over 1,300 feet, as Philippe Petit did between the two towers of the former World Trade Center? Mechanically, it is the same (not accounting for wind or other variables, of course): if you maintain your balance and stay calm, you will make it to the other side safely. If, however, you lose heart halfway across and fall, the consequences of a fall from those two heights are very, very different.
To succeed requires a combination of knowledge and belief, knowledge that you have the necessary training and skills to do something combined with the belief you can actually do it. Knowledge without belief is just noise; belief without knowledge is dangerous. To grow into the abundant life God dreams for each of us requires us to combine what we know with what we believe and then to act with courage.
Think of Wile E. Coyote running off the cliff and staying airborne until he looks down. Think of Peter walking out to Jesus on the water until he lost heart and began to sink. The knowledge that heavy things go down overrode the belief that, just maybe, they don’t have to.
The author of 1 John takes time to lay out the case for how and why we can trust in God’s love today and every day. Take time to read through this 4th chapter of the epistle today or this week and see for yourself. The excerpt we will hear in worship Sunday, 1 John 4:7-21, repeats the word “love” in some form 27 times. It does so by way of reiterating this central theme of our faith: God loves us and has made a way for us to be forgiven so that we, then, can reflect this love by forgiving, accepting, and loving one another.
We know this is the way to peace and happiness. Yet too often we don’t combine the knowledge that it is in forgiving that we are forgiven with the belief that this applies to us and the people who have wronged us, too. It’s hard. It can even be terrifying, like trying to walk 1,000 feet above the earth with no safety net or no harness. Yet we know and believe that it is in this sort of life and this sort of love that we are truly walking in the light of Christ. Friends – be brave, know, and believe.
Keep the Faith,
Pastor Ben Farewell Celebration – Saturday, June 5, 2021
Save the date! There are invitations in the bulletin in worship as well as coming to you in the mail. Beth La Penta is asking that everyone RSVPs whether you plan to attend or not so we have enough food for everyone. Thanks!
Continuing Coffee Hour Over Zoom – Time Change!
Laura Newton will host a weekly time of conversation and connection at 11:45 am after our worship service each week. Login is available at 11:30 am or conclusion of worship, whichever is later.
Here is a link to that time –
If you have questions or need help, you can ask Pastor Ben or Laura. Don’t be shy, you are missed and a part of this church family, too!
New Upper Rooms are Available in the Church Office
The new Upper Room Daily Devotionals are also available now. If you’d like to pick yours up, Gretchen is in the church office from 9am-noon Tuesday – Friday each week. Please call ahead so she can set whatever you are picking up out for you.
You will find every newsletter, worship service, devotional, and additional material posted on our Facebook page:
Even if you don’t use Facebook, you can access everything we have there. If you do have a Facebook account, “like” to follow our page and be notified when new things are posted or when videos are about to go live so you don’t miss anything.
Coffee Hour is a time of sharing after Sunday morning worship hosted by Laura Newton at approximately 11:30 am. All are welcome!
If you have any difficulties accessing any of those links, please reply to this message or call the church office at (908)782-1070 and we will get you connected right away.