For four Sundays, starting with Trinity Sunday, May 27th, we are doing a series entitled, “Growing in….” Each week we will fill in the blank. We will explore growing in, faith, joy, hope, and love.
On May 27th, Trinity Sunday, our theme is “Growing in Faith.” In our Gospel reading, John 3:1-17, Jesus would encounter Nicodemus, the “teacher of Israel”, who would learn, that despite how much one knows of the faith, one must always continue to grow in the faith. That faith is centered in the verse quoted above, “God so loved the World that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” Our faith centers in Jesus!
On June 3rd our theme will be, “Growing in Joy.” In our Gospel reading, Mark 2:23-28, Jesus teaches about the Sabbath. He says that man was not made for the sabbath, but that the sabbath was made for man. God made the sabbath for us as a time when we can grow in the joy He provides for us, as we celebrate all of the mighty acts of God that He has performed for us, so that we could be His own forever in Jesus. We rejoice in His joy!
On June 10th our theme will be, “Growing in Hope.” In our Gospel reading, Mark 3:20-35, Jesus is accused of being able to cast out demons because He is the prince of demons. Jesus explains that Satan would never get anywhere by fighting against himself. Then Jesus tells the parable about binding the strong man before plundering his house. The devil is the strong man. Jesus would bind him, defeat him, and destroy his power over us, by giving His own life for us and rising again from the dead. Jesus would then plunder the devil’s house by setting us free from our sin and from the death it would bring us. That is what gives us a certain hope for today and for our future eternally! We grow in that hope as we continue to hear about and celebrate how Jesus has won it for us.
On June 17th, also Father’s Day, our theme will be, “Growing in Love.” Our Gospel reading, Mark 4:26-34, includes Jesus’ comparison of faith to the mustard seed. As our faith is nourished by the love of God, some of which is provided through our fathers, it grows. And just as the mustard seed grows into a tree that provides for the birds of the air, so our faith grows in the love of God to produce love that flows from us to help us provide for others. We grow in His love!
The final Sunday in June, June 24th, has Mark 4:35-41 as our Gospel. In this Gospel Jesus calms the storm for His disciples by the power of His Word. By that same power, Jesus calms the storms in our lives. As we grown in faith, joy, hope, and love we are enabled to trust in the Lord for all things. And He delivers for us in so many wonderful ways culminating in the greatest blessing, the peace and joy of our everlasting life in His presence forever.
Just a note about my health: On May 29th I will have had my next CT Scan to determine how successful my treatment is going. I will keep you posted as to the results as soon as I know them. As always, keep me in your prayers. I appreciate that more than I can tell you! God’s blessings upon your month of June!