Friday, March 16, 2018

Comfort amid March Madness

March Madness is truly upon us. Not only are there basketball games happening all day (Go MIZZOU - sorry had to) but Gracehill is preparing for soft launch this coming Sunday. Easter is ever approaching and there is also this little little thing called life that is still happening day by day. Some of us find ourselves in the middle of lenten fasting, a task that can prove to be very difficult, dare I say, mad at times? Some of us are preparing for the madness of a church plant launching. Some of us feel like vagabonds, wondering what else 2018 is going to hurl our way. All of us are in the throws of life. Which begs the question, where does one look amidst the madness? How does one live in the madness?

Comfort. That is what we long for when we are in the throng of madness. We look for something, someone or some situation to soothe us, console us, to bring cheer in or through the madness. A national championship, a vacation, physical healing, all examples of mediums that can result in comfort.

This Sunday at Christ Church we are delving into our last installment of our intentional look at the Holy Spirit in our Upper Room series. Andrew will preach on the Holy Spirit as Comforter. Consider these words from Jesus in John 14;
“These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid”
What’s remarkable about this passage is what Jesus leaves with his disciples. Peace. Shalom, the Hebrew word that peace derives from had a much more rich direction than our word and translation peace. Shalom conveys the absence of conflict, but it also, at the same time, conveys the notion of positive blessing, most pointetly in terms of a right relationship with God. One might say its a “two-for”, both comfort from turbulence, AND blessing in Union with Christ.

Here we find true comfort, provided to us through The Comforter. So whether you are scrambling through your taxes, managing a household of kids, preparing details for a church plant, fumbling through a full calendar, or sitting alone - wherever you find yourself in this March madness, remember we have the peace, the comfort and the blessing of The Comforter working through us.

“And this is his work [The Holy Spirit] to the end of the world—to bring the promises of Christ to our minds and hearts, to give us the comfort of them, the joy and sweetness of them…”
(Vanhoozer, Communion with the Triune God)

~ Addison Hawkins

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