St. Stephen Lutheran Church
It has been quite the season for unseasonable weather in Minnesota. I can't tell you how many conversations I have had regarding the weather over the past several weeks. Our weather this winter has been front page news on more than one occasion.
As a society, we do pay a great deal of attention to the weather, don't we? The weather is important. It affects our lives - our weekend plans, our golf game, our crops, our gardens, our sleeping patterns. Weather affects us in very many ways. We get weather reports on the news every night at 5, 6 and 10, we get weather on the television in the morning during the morning talk shows every 15 minutes, and we can even tune in to the Weather Channel to get a forecast 24 hours a day. We have made all kinds of technological advances to help us predict the weather - we truly are a weather-obsessed society! Think about your conversations with other people throughout the day - what is one topic that comes up all the time? Weather! We look out for it, we talk about it and think about it every single day.
Jesus noticed the very same thing about the people in his day. They were a weather-obsessed society. They spent a great deal of time and energy trying to interpret weather patterns based on the clouds and the wind. I'm sure these people talked about the weather a great deal in their conversations, just as we do today. Jesus chastises them for not paying as much attention to the coming of the Messiah as they do to the weather. "When you see a cloud rising in the west, you immediately say, 'It is going to rain'; and so it happens. And when you see the south wind blowing, you say, 'There will be scorching heat'; and so it happens. You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of earth and sky, but why do you not know how to interpret the present time?" (Luke 12:54-56) How much attention do we pay to Jesus in our lives? Do you pay as much attention to Jesus Christ as you do to the weather? Do you spend as much time concerning yourself about your faith, as you do concerned about the weather? What would it look like as a society if we really did pay as much attention to our faith as we did to the weather?
What if we had a 24-hour channel that instead of giving weather reports from around the country, gave reports on how people across the nation loved their neighbors as themselves? What if the weatherperson reminded us every 15 minutes in the morning that Jesus loves us? What if, instead of starting a conversation by saying, "beautiful weather we're having" or "looks like a storm's brewing," we said instead, "Tell me God has touched your life today," or "you know, I haven't seen Mrs. Johnson down the street outside walking lately - I wonder how she's doing? Let's go stop by for a visit." or "I need help, could you pray with me?" What if we worked to interpret our faith as diligently as we work to interpret the weather?
Jesus Christ is this promise made real for us, the promise of new life, the promise of forgiveness of sin, the promise of salvation. This promise that God gives us through Jesus Christ is much more reliable than anything the meteorologists can predict. This promise is life. This promise is for you.