What encouraged you today
Who would have thought it a year ago: in 2021 we are celebrating for the second year in a row without church service, without Easter coffee, without Easter egg hunt for the children.
That is not easy, especially at Easter many miss their church, the worship service. At least that's how I feel.
I think Easter is so important to us at this time. For that I have to go back a little:
Recently someone asked me: “What does the church actually say about Corona?” Now there is no such thing as “the church” in the sense that there is a doctrine that is valid for everyone. Every Christian is allowed to form his or her own opinion. But there is a pretty clear line about Corona Not is: the pandemic is certainly not a divine punishment for any human sins. In the Middle Ages, for example, the plague was interpreted this way. Today (almost) nobody does that anymore.My answer to the question was that such a global epidemic can best be understood as a warning: as a warning that we must better fulfill our mission to cultivate and preserve God's good creation . We have to deal with this world more carefully and responsibly. Such an epidemic is certainly also a sign that we as human beings have to respect our limits better.
No, God is not sending us a plague. But he is with us during this time. Faith in God can help us get through this difficult crisis. And that brings us to the topic of Easter:
Easter - this is the festival of life and hope. A sigh of relief after a very difficult time.
The women who go to the grave on Easter morning have experienced this: they leave sad and hopeless - and then a confidence, a new courage, a hope that they could not give themselves grows in them.
On Easter morning they find the tomb in which they laid Jesus empty. Two angels tell them: Jesus is not dead, God did not leave him in death, but raised him to new life.
Hard to believe, even then! Even the closest friends of Jesus couldn't believe it at first, how could it be easier for us today, 2000 years later
What we have is just an empty grave. And the reports from people who have described to us how this experience has totally changed them.
This is what the women, who were previously so discouraged, first feel at the grave on Easter morning. At first very gently, very gently. But then always stronger, so that she inspires this hope and changes her whole life.
No matter how good arguments you can be convinced that God really did raise His Son from the dead.
But one can hope from this infect You can let this confidence be the air that blows us under our wings and carries us through life when we run out of air ourselves.
When things get tight around us and hopeless, the way ahead is apparently in the dark, then we need this Easter that gives us new hope. It is precisely then that we can let ourselves be infected by the fact that people have experienced: with God everything is really possible.
Death does not have the last word, God alone has that. Just as he did not let the women settle down in the sadness on Easter morning, our gaze should also lift and we can look ahead with confidence: at a time in which we have all the depressing of this crisis behind us.
The time after Corona: it will come and sometimes you can already guess the light behind the corner a bit.
It will all come again, little by little and step by step. Just as the women found their way back step by step on Easter morning into the life that God wanted to show them.
Stay safe and healthy, stay confident.
For Sunday, March 29th, 20
It's hard times. Times of great personal constraints. Even with great emotional stress.
It's a very strange mood for me right now: the calm before a storm that you hope to somehow survive and that it won't get so bad.
Even so, there are now things for which I am grateful. And that give me hope:
I am grateful for my family and the friends I have contact with in whatever way. Because I feel: I am not alone, even if we specifically cannot be close.
I am grateful that we can live in our village, with the nature around us, with our gardens. I don't like to imagine living in the confines of a city now, it's relatively good for us there.
I am grateful for those who are working right now to ensure that life can go on: that the shop is open, the doctor's office. I am grateful for those who take care of others, especially in the hospitals. There are so many silent heroes these days!
I am also grateful that we live in this country. Regardless of everything you can think of politicians: I personally believe that we are in good hands and that those who now bear the heavy responsibility are doing it as well as they can. People who seek advice from experts who are competent. What a treasure trove of clever scientists we have with us!
I experience the people who now have to make difficult decisions like this: calm, determined and prudent.
This reminds me of a sentence from the Bible: God did not give us the spirit of fear, but the spirit of strength and love and prudence. *
* 2. Timothy, chapter 1, verse 7
For me that sums up what matters now.
Spirit of prudence: for me that means: don't panic, but stick to what the experts tell us.
Spirit of love, spirit of power: for me that is everything that gives us courage to stand up for others, to care, to be there for one another. And also to think of yourself and keep hope.
As I found it in one of the many texts that you now encounter on the Internet in view of the crisis:
Not everything is canceled
Sun is not canceled
Spring is not canceled
Relationships are not canceled
Love is not canceled
Reading is not canceled
Donation is not canceled
Music is not canceled
Imagination is not canceled
Friendliness is not canceled
Talks are not canceled
Hope is not canceled
Prayer is not canceled.
Hope and prayer are not canceled!
In our church there is a light of hope every evening from 6 p.m. on: a candle on the altar (don't worry: it is electric).
You can be sure: even in the dark this light burns for all of us. Even if we can't go there at the moment: The light shines. A small sign that God is not forsaking us.
Stay healthy and protected!
Your Pastor Jens Siebmann
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