Malachi 4:5-6 "Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that I will not come and smite the land with a curse."
Another season is upon us and the harvest is taking place, the days are getting much shorter, Covid 19 is making changes and yet in the midst of the changes and strife we are still being the "The Church" .
The prophecy of Malachi says The Lord will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers. The Son of God has changed many things in our world. As we are in the midst of change in life and season , we can see how the Lord has and will change families, brothers and sisters, and how the church does church.
Through the past 5 months many activities in the church have been canceled or postponed. Even today our activities are minimum. Yet we gather both live and livestream to worship. we pray together, we collect our thoughts in the presence of God, we allow God to speak to us, and His church is still active within our communities, The church is not "shut down."
The faith of our ancestors, the ones who built this, a community of believers, is still available to all. Our ancestors started with nothing but faith in God that God would provide for them as they prayed and prayed and then took action.
Some of their actions were out of necessity to survive. Embrace God's will in an extended prayer time. Seek what God wants from you to survive. Watch the changes taking place outside your window as God is changing what is inside our hearts and minds. Some of these changes are necessary for us to survive. Through our prayers we can turn our hearts as parents, and grandparents, as schooling is new. Our children's activities have changed and our normal way of life is how we live life at this moment.
I see the hearts and minds of the children in my life growing up in extraordinary times. For some this is what they know. For others, the older ones, they wrestle with the reality that their past memories of life will not match the future and their children's memories will be different as life moves on.
Well isn't that true for all generations? Malachi tells us thast the Lord will change the world. I remember my grandfather telling me how the fields I was looking at were plowed by horses instead of a tractor I was watching. My grandmother told me how she was the first female bus driver in Pennsylvania. Living without electricity or indoor plumbing and the outhouse that still stood in the middle of the yard. How a big trip was to travel into town.
Today we don't even need to leave our own houses to see all the world on our hand held phones. yet the Lord God is still in all of this. God is about families and through the generations we can see that, our own heritage. Malachi is talking about connectedness through the Lord.
Embrace each other, parent to child, child to parent. Then take this unconditional love, the love God blesses you with beyond your home into your faith community. Hereit will grow. How exciting. It will grow so you can take it out into your community and "Be the Church" of Jesus Christ.
During this time of change, watch what God has planned for all of us. Be ready, be faithful, and be prayerful. Then, even in troubled times, you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Almighty God, help me to find solace in these times of changes. Where Lord, it seems people are looking out for themselves and forgetting we are a community brought together by the blood of Jesus Christ. Help us unite in prayer, to live in patience and enthusiasm as we see the changes you may be making this very day. Lord, I pray that fathers and mothers reunite their hearts with their childrens. That Your Word is imprinted on their foreheads. Lord I pray you open the minds of this community of believers to see new ways of connecting that are open to all people. May I seek peace above right, may I not be anxious or worried but instead trust that Your Will be done. Father, I pray for this church. I pray for the Holy Spirit to come and guide us to be open to the changes in our time of need. Father, I thank you and pray all things int he mighty name of Your Son Jesus.
Meet the pastor
Rev. Pastor Carl Schreiber has been serving East Orrington Congregational Church (EOCC) since March 12, 2006