June, 2018- From Interim Pastor Daniel Olson-
Dear Friends, Brothers, Sisters, Neighbors, and Partners in Christ through Siloa Church:
Paul shares this insight in 2 Corinthians 5: 17 - 20
"So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us. So we are ambassadors for Christ, since God is making his appeal through us; we entreat you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
My most powerful understanding of the work of the Church is that we are called into a ministry of reconciliation. Reconciliation means healing, and bringing together what has been separated. It is about mending what is broken. When God's children are reunited with each other and reunited with God, that is joy, that is life, that is "salvation".
Back in Lent, at our three church gathering on March 21 at Siloa, Pastor CJ led us in an exercise that encouraged us to think about when and where we have seen God in beauty, and in acts of justice, and in acts of reconciliation. Here is a compiled list of all of the responses that the worshippers wrote on that day on the topic of reconciliation. Indeed God's ministry of reconciliation among us is a wonderful gift!
Seeing God in acts of reconciliation between people: " I have seen God's power of reconciliation, healing and forgiveness when- "
when I was sick but people helped and it was O.K., seeing my cousin again after a long time, between my child and I, when someone helped me with my homework, when I did not fight with Mom when she was frustrating me, at home with children, me and my mother, when I was mad because in the family when they are tough on us, when my husband doesn't think I love him but I DO!! and we are still together, I have spats with someone with different ideas in math every day yet I still sit by the same person, during conversations at coffee time at Salem,
I saw a dad cradling his newborn, when my loved one turned back to God, in school - at home, Mike!, when a group comes together to help at church, at home, between T. and V., when my boss apologized to me for losing temper - accepting my mom's apology at dinner time, my friend went to get help because of me and she is a lot better and she isn't upset at me, I see it at the kitchen table, fighting with my daughter and hugging later and saying, "I love you.",
when I keep my cool while driving, working at Global Health to help others in third world countries, when it happens between two co-workers, had an argument and was forgiven, wholeness- my math grade, in the basement, watching the sun come up and wondering who else is seeing this, in the forgiving of old sins by a friend, acceptance of others as they are, at work, in the family, with my wife regarding communication, talking things out with others whether agreeing or not, work - charity dinner, between spouses, at a funeral, compromise with spouse, serving the homeless, drop old grudges,
when people help in disaster zones after hurricanes and tornadoes, TC, when I saw a video of Fred Rogers meeting with a group of children, at school-third grade classroom-differences of opinion, faith, at home, forgiveness, accepting another's driving style, repairing-reconciliation-paint the church with friends who get together to serve God, in worship at Salem, when I said hello to someone I’ve never met before, reset the table, when I fight with my brother but then the next day we are nice to each other, when we work together, allowed someone to cut in front of me, gathering,....... reconciliation, peace