Well, what could be said about the year that was 2020? A list of words which I have heard thrown around in an attempt to describe it includes: unprecedented, harrowing, tragic, horrible, etc. Books will be written about the year that was 2020. A global pandemic, social justice concerns, hurricanes galore, election anxiety, were just a few of the events that we experienced. What should our response be to such a time of crisis? God has responded for us on our behalf in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. God has and will fulfill every promise, often in the face of and in the presence of a crisis or suffering. Grief and brokenness are all around us, yet God comes to us in the suffering of the cross to bring life out of death, hope out of despair, transformation out of alienation. As we turn the page on 2020, we can be thankful for all the ways that God was faithful and a comforting presence in our lives. The body of Christ known as Christ the King Lutheran Church stepped up to love each other, care for our neighbors, and be a calming presence in the chaos swirling around us.
One of the ways to cope and live in a time of crisis is to spend time in prayer. May the prayer of St. Francis guide and comfort you all.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me bring love.
Where there is offence, let me bring pardon.
Where there is discord, let me bring union.
Where there is error, let me bring truth.
Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.
Where there is despair, let me bring hope.
Where there is darkness, let me bring your light.
Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.
O Master, let me not seek as much to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love,
for it is in giving that one receives,
it is in self-forgetting that one finds,
it is in pardoning that one is pardoned,
it is in dying that one is raised to eternal life.
Living in God’s amazing grace,
Pastor Matthew Groenke