August 30 – Bless and Do Not Curse

I have a problem with anti-racism.

When we attempt to tear something down, to rip something from society, even something as evil as racism, unintended consequences follow. It is like cutting out a Stage 4 cancer; adjacent organs are harmed in the process.

The Apostle Paul, in his letter to the Romans, proposed a more difficult process:

Love genuinely; abhorring the evil, clinging to the good; being affectionate to one another with brotherly love; outdoing one another in honor, not lagging in haste/diligence, being afire in the Spirit, serving the Lord, rejoicing in hope, enduring in suffering, persevere in prayer, contributing to the needs of the saints; pursuing kindness to strangers.

Romans 12:9-13

So yes, abhor racism and all its tentacles in society while clinging to the good, to brotherly love, to honoring one another, and to serving the Lord. Envision what you will see when racism is erased; when its absence can no longer be detected, except as a matter of history. Imagine a day when racism has been fully eliminated from the face of the globe like Smallpox globally and Polio from the United States. What new structures do you see in that better future? In the case of Polio vaccine protocols exist that ensure that every child is vaccinated preventing future outbreaks.

Image of honey by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay.

I believe that by focusing on the benefits of society where racism exists only in history books and where ethic harmony is appreciated. Thus we will draw more people toward that future. We will build structures that will advance that future.

I believe that when we focus on building new structures that affirm ethnic harmony racism will be denied the energy it needs to persist.

I will have more to say about Romans 12:9-21 here by 8:00 a.m.on Sunday, August 30th.
Robert Shaw, Pastor

A Tip for Parents

One day, Moses was taking care of the sheep and goats of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian, and Moses decided to lead them across the desert to Sinai, the holy mountain. There an angel of the Lord appeared to him from a burning bush. Moses saw that the bush was on fire, but it was not burning up. “This is strange!” he said to himself. “I’ll go over and see why the bush isn’t burning up.”

When the Lord saw Moses coming near the bush, he called him by name, and Moses answered, “Here I am.”

God replied, “Don’t come any closer. Take off your sandals—the ground where you are standing is holy. I am the God who was worshiped by your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.”

Moses was afraid to look at God, and so he hid his face.

Exodus 3:1-6 (CEV)
Shoes on a door mat.
Image by Mohamed Nuzrath from Pixabay

When we worship God, wherever we are, does the land beneath our feet become holy ground?

Some places of worship expect their members to remove their shoes before entering. If we were to do that, would that help us recognize that whenever two or three people are gathered together in the name of the Lord, that God is there with them?

Worship

By 8 AM Sunday, August 30th, a video of this worship service will be embedded here. After that time, you will also be able to view worship on a smart-TV through YouTube by searching for Temple Terrace Presbyterian Church.

The Offering

As disciples of Jesus Christ we give so that we may dedicate the whole of our lives by sharing a portion of what we earn with others.

Although COVID-19 has forced us to curtail all in person groups, meetings, classes, …, even office hours. Yet we continue other ministries. For example: Wednesday Bible Study, Sunday school for children and the Fellowship Hour all meet via video-teleconference.

In these unusual times we deeply appreciate your giving through your bank or by clicking our Give Now button. We continue to check our mailbox regularly so you may mail your check to us.