Attending to my
resolutions with resolve, I'm back on my treadmill again.
There is that moment just beforehand, while lacing my sneakers,
when I consider not working out on the treadmill at all.
Even those first few minutes on the treadmill seem like
drudgery. But I find that, after walking along for awhile,
my mind becomes free for all kinds of activity. I reflect
on the day's events. I pray. I've even been known to
compose sermons (or "Staff Notes," for that matter).
There's a tremendous freedom in the steady rhythm of my walking.
What rhythms in
your lives offer you freedom? I think of the swimmer doing
laps or the pianist running fingers up and down the scales.
I think of my Grandmother Rouse with her crochet hook twisting
and turning in a regular pace that produced afghans as well as
much-needed quiet time. Some of you may work at a job that
requires a rhythm or pattern of motion. These rhythmic
motions can be understood as tiresome, or can be viewed as
The Church Year
has its own rhythm. Some Christian denominations pay scant
attention to the days and seasons of the Church Year, except to
mark the high points such as Christmas and Easter. But our
Lutheran tradition offers the opportunity to live and worship
within these various seasons, celebrating particular days.
We begin the year with Advent, anticipating Christ's birth and
second coming. We rejoice in newborn king, and then move
into Epiphany, where the glory and power of this king is
increasingly revealed to us through scripture. Soon we
will journey through Lent, and consider the depth and degree of
our Lord's love for us, which takes Him to the cross.
There are folks,
even within our denomination, who find the marking of the Church
Year confining. But I liken it to being on that treadmill.
There is a tremendous freedom in the steady rhythm of walking
through the Church Year. When we begin that journey,
we are liberated to concentrate on the needful things. We
can reflect on the Son of God, who gave himself for the life of
the world, We can pray for his continual help in our
lives. We can praise him and use this God-given freedom to
serve joyfully as his people.
Come and worship.
Come with me and enter into the rhythm of our Church Year.
I assure you it will not be tiresome. On the contrary, it
will invigorate your soul.