The Shepherd’s Vigil, 12/29/21

So we rebuilt the wall,…for the people had a mind to work.              Nehemiah 4:6

The people of God had been in exile, away from the temple and their patterns of worship.  Nehemiah was sent back to lead the resettling and the first item of business was to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem and the temple.  The people were ready to restore, re-form, re-build the temple.  The people had a mind to work.

It feels like we have been living in a kind of “exile” for the last couple of years.  Our patterns of life have drastically changed, and we are ready for some restoration.  I too agree it is time to “rebuild”.  The thing is when you rebuild it is never exactly the same as it was before.

The new temple Nehemiah would rebuild would not look the same as the previous temple.  As we “rebuild” the church in 2022 it will not look the same.  One example is food.  Remember large gatherings of folks around a “covered dish buffet”?  We are going to have to rethink that concept.  So, you can see the work to reimagine worship, communion, and other ministries as we go forward.

I think the key to the “re-build” or “re-form” the church is in this scripture.  The people had a mind to work.  Courageous servants of Jesus will be needed to do the work that lays ahead of us.  We are entering into a time of a new kind of reformation in the church.

Pray we are gathering strength for the work ahead.  Pray for our collective patience and dedication to the work.  The good news is that Jesus is born; God is with us, Emmanuel.  We do not go into this work alone.

Peace & Blessings,

Pastor Rafe