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As we move toward our last Sunday focusing on the fruits of the Spirit, I’d like us to take a moment and think about the focus of our gaze. In his reflection entitled, “Incarnation,” Richard Rohr writes, “In most pictures of people waiting for the Holy Spirit they are looking upward, they have their hands out or raised – the assumption being that the Spirit is up there.” He goes on to describe a statue of St Francis of Assisi in the Great Basilica of Assisi where Francis’ posture isn’t looking up, but rather is looking into the earth. Rohr says, “If Divinity became flesh in Jesus, if God entered the world as a human being, then it was this world that became the hiding and revealing place of God.”  

The truth of the incarnation is that God is found here with us, in us, and around us. When we live into the fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control we are a part of the hiding and revealing places of God. We are the face of grace for someone else, the mercy, forgiveness, and joy of Christ. So as we look toward Sunday and “joy” I wonder, are we looking up or into each other’s eyes?

In Peace, Pastor Ruth

Let us pray:
Lead us, Gracious God, and shape us by the grace of Christ and the inspiration of your Holy Spirit. Open our hearts to expand our understanding of gentleness and peace, that we may grow in our ability to reflect your love and grace to those we meet this day. All this we ask in the name of Christ, Amen.