Kindred in Christ,
Last week we began our worship series on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount titled Blessed. We considered how after Jesus lists his counter-cultural blessings, he concludes the opening section of his discourse by proclaiming over the gathered congregation, “You are the salt of the earth,” “the light of the world,” and a “city on a hill” (Matt 5:1-15). Too often churches become synonymous with being boring or committed to the status quo. And while we have many lovely traditions, there is often a need to reimagine them and do something new. Jesus invites his followers to not be bland or flavorless. Instead, we are called to be zesty and spicey! He challenges us to stand out and to do something noticeable that draws others in—like a city on a hill.
This past week I also joined seven recent members of our congregation in hosting our latest printmaking pop-up on the lawn of University Heights (see above). And while we began with the concern of getting rained out, the rain cleared, and we ended up hosting our biggest pop-up event yet! We created art with over 50 people and blew bubbles and played with even more families and kids. Some people recognized us and mentioned being happy to see us back. Others asked who we were and wanted to learn more about our church. And, as always, we had a couple sign up for a pastoral meet up over coffee sometime in the next few weeks. We did something interesting that drew people in and created community!
I am excited to continue to find ways of doing church that are zesty and interesting. And I look forward to continuing to explore Jesus’ vision of transformation and discipleship in the Sermon on the Mount over the next few weeks.
Rev. Paul Ortiz