Proverbs 27:17

Proverbs 27:17

Friday, February 16, 2024

Entering the Weekend with Christ

Hi everyone,

Thanks to everyone who joined our Ash Wednesday supper and service.  I hope the smudges have worn off (rookie pastor was a bit inconsistent in applying the ashes)!

As we enter the weekend, attached are some reflections with a nice pictorial representation of Jesus coming out of the wilderness after 40 days as we hear in Mark 1:13 "the angels waited on him".

Pastor Tim

"God has led you to the desert, and spoken to your Heart."
Mount of Olives Lutheran Church
3546 E. Thomas Rd
Phoenix, AZ 85018
602-956-1620 office

Reflections on A Rainbow Covenant 

Hope Rising from Floodwaters

Brothers and sisters in Christ, as we enter this first weekend in Lent, each of our readings for this Sunday speaks of hope rising from waters, reminding us of the transformative power of baptism and God’s covenant with God’s children.

The Flood and the Rainbow: In the OT reading from Genesis, we hear the familiar redemption story of Noah as God’s choice to begin anew.  In a beautiful act of grace, God establishes a covenant, not of judgment, but of promise. The rainbow, once a weapon of destruction, becomes a symbol of hope, a reminder that God's mercy endures even after wrath.

Baptism: A New Beginning: In 1 Peter, we see the connection between Noah's ark and baptism. Just as the ark offered salvation from the flood, baptism offers salvation from sin. It's not a ritual washing away dirt, but a cleansing of the soul, a pledge to a clear conscience before God. Like Noah stepping onto dry land, baptism marks a new beginning, a journey out of darkness and into the light of Christ.

The Baptism of Jesus: Finally, Mark portrays the baptism of Jesus. The heavens open, the Spirit descends, and a voice proclaims, "You are my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased." This event signifies the inauguration of Jesus' ministry, the moment he embraces his calling as the Messiah. It sets the stage for his ultimate sacrifice, washing away the sins of the world, fulfilling the promise whispered in the rainbow.

From Flood to Font: So, how do these stories connect to us today? We, too, face our own floods – personal struggles, societal problems, the ever-present temptation to wander from God's path. Yet, baptism reminds us that we are not alone. Like Noah emerging from the ark, we can step onto dry land, reborn in Christ. Like Jesus, empowered by the Spirit, we can embrace our callings, to love, serve, and spread the message of hope.

Hope and Renewal: Every baptism is a celebration of this hope, a reminder that God's promise, like the rainbow, endures. It's a chance to renew our commitment to Christ, to wash away the dust of sin and step forward with clean hearts and open minds.

Therefore, let us enter this weekend carrying the light of Christ within us. Let us be instruments of God's grace, spreading hope and love wherever we go. And remember, even when the floods of life threaten to overwhelm, the rainbow covenant shines bright, reminding us that God's love and mercy are ever present, guiding us on our journey towards eternal life.


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