I stumbled upon an unfinished sermon.  It was stuck somewhere within my 2009 sermon folder. I noticed the dated was September 2008.  This got me thinking, not about my filing effectiveness but rather wondering about what happened in 2008.  The memory was immediate. We had a financial crises following the bankruptcies of Lehman Brothers and Washington Mutual.   The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 777.68 points, its largest single-day point loss. There were 8 major hurricanes resulting in 1073 total fatalities with the damage exceeding $48.855 billion dollars.  SpaceX launched the first ever private spacecraft, the Falcon 1, into orbit. (Free) Britney Spears won the Video Music Awards and the Pentagon Memorial in Washington, D.C. was dedicated to the 184 people who died in the attack on the building on September 11, 2001. You should take a few minutes and peruse the events in 2008.
Back to it.  After reading the sermon, I quickly realized why it remained unfinished. I promise, there was potential. Somewhere in all those words, I was vividly reminded of “my saints.”  Now, in our reformed tradition we don’t elevate people to the height of sainthood. Most people think of sainthood as being an honor granted by the Vatican after a long and complex ecclesiastical process.  But as stated in that almost brilliant sermon was the sentence, “saints are called saints because through their lives they imitated Christ and embodied Christ-like virtues.” Spiritual power, excellence, moral worthiness and healing were the original marks of a “virtuous” person of Christ. Virtue is derived from the Greek “dynamis,” meaning “power” or “influence.
A bit meandering, but I offer this for reflection.  I believe that along the way I’ve had more than a few saints enter my life.  We invite you to pause and remember the Bob Smiths, Doris & AT Browns, Tom Stallworths, and the Johanne Bos (your saints) and give thanks for their wit, wisdom, continuing invitation, as well as their direct challenge, support, encouragement and love to live more Christ-like… to be distinguished as God’s beloved.

Scripture Reading: Corinthians 3:18
“And all of us, with unveiled faces, seeing the glory of the Lord as though reflected in a mirror, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord, the Spirit.”

Reflection Questions:
Who are your saints?
What makes for a saint?
What hymn includes the words “singing to Father, Son and Holy Ghost, Alleluia! Alleluia!”

Prayer: Holy God, keep me mindful that what I do today will have an impact on others.  Remind me that your way is seen in the choices I make to be faithful.  Amen.

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