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When you have to sort, decide what you want to keep, pack and then unpack everything that you own you discover quite a bit about yourself. For instance, evidently Patti and I love potholders and aprons. So far every box that we have opened for the kitchen has contained one, if not several of these items. I used to collect aprons from chili cook-offs and wild game feeds that I participated in, you have to know that aprons at these events are like t-shirts everyone gives them away. Sometimes it makes me wonder where we put all of this stuff and why we kept it in the first place.
However, we have also encountered items that we forgot we had or mementoes that we have been looking for and finally found. Many of these items are special like the small ceramic angel given to me by a wonderful woman in my first church who purchased the home my grandparents built in North Carolina. She found the angel in the attic and kept it, until she gave it to me over forty years later. These possessions spark memories and remind us of friends and family that are not with us anymore.
I think that the scriptures are a lot like these possessions. Sometimes we unearth a rare gem that for some reason we forgot about, but that we desperately need to hear that day. Or perhaps we read a favorite story, one that we have read countless times, but on this day we find a new way that it relates to our lives or it triggers a different understanding of our relationship with God. This is why we read, study and then repeat with the bible again and again. It is why we should continually reevaluate our beliefs and challenge our faith. This is why we continue to pray and open ourselves to the voice of God, it is because we are not done, we are never done, we continue to learn, develop, and change in this journey we call faith.
So I invite you to do a little unpacking in the weeks ahead. Think about why we do things the way we do them in our lives and in the church. Evaluate your relationship with God and see how it can be made stronger, and above all, remember that the love of our Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer continues to challenge, inspire, and make us new each and every day. Together I am sure we will find something wonderful, Amen.