It is my “blogiversary,” the one-year anniversary of this blog, and I want to take a moment to thank everyone who has read any of my “pastoral ponderings.” You are a blessing to me, and I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to share my thoughts with you. I am also incredibly grateful for all of the blogs that I have discovered this past year. Blogging is much more of a community experience than I ever realized, and my life has been made richer in endless ways through all of your writings.
I thought that this would be a good day to share with you my purpose for keeping this blog, and a practice that has helped me to keep this purpose in mind. And that is through a very simple practice that I have developed of publishing my blog posts at certain times. These times, in and of themselves, remind me of my blog’s purpose.
For example, I often post at 8:12 am, because of John 8:12: “Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.’” Publishing my ponderings at 8:12 reminds me that one of the purposes of my blog is simply to reflect the light of Christ into our world. The world can be a dark place at times, but we are promised that when we follow Jesus we will never walk in darkness. My blog is one way that I try to remind us all of this incredible promise.
I also publish some of my posts at 3:12 pm, because of this passage in Colossians 3:1-2: “So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” I think that it is very important to do this, to set our minds on things that are above. Not all the time, of course, but every day. As we are flooded with news, and with everyday cares and concerns, it can be easy to focus all of our thoughts on this world. And there is an endless parade of worldly concerns to focus on! But taking a few moments every day to set our minds on things that are above is a wonderfully simple way to keep our perspective in life, and to nurture our faith and trust in Christ.
And finally, I try to publish my sermons each Saturday at 11:28 am. Can you guess why? One of my favorite verses in all of scripture is the reason – Matthew 11:28, when Jesus said: “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” That is one of the primary purposes of my sermons, to invite us each and every week to come to Jesus and find rest for our weary souls. Jesus goes on in the next two verses to say: “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” So the rest that Jesus offers us is found by learning from Jesus, and by taking his yoke upon us, a yoke that is easy (well-fitting), and a burden that is light. And, again, my hope and prayer is that my sermons invite us to do just that. To learn from Jesus, to take his yoke upon us, and to find rest for our souls.
If sharing my sermons and other pastoral ponderings on this blog helps us to remember this wonderful invitation from Jesus, then it will have all been most worthwhile. So, cheers to our year together, and I look forward to all that God has in store for us in the years to come!