Mission Statement

Cyber Sabbath's goal is to begin to mend the division between Christ and the world (society) that Church has created through reflections, sermons and devotionals

Cyber Sabbath is a place for the stifled Christian voice to be heard. Media gives way to much time to the extremist - over looking the theologically educated and/or the moderates in favor of what sells their view point. Here, politics aside, a pastor reflects on God's voice in every day life.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

compassion to understand

Sitting in her chair, white hair recently permed by the hairstylist into a frozen dome shaping her face and small skull I find one of my regular patients.  She is in her 90's a full 60 years older then me and yet the age difference seems to flee away in conversation; so much so that often she forgets how young I am and asks me about my grandchildren.  Being the fact that she is in a nursing home, some might see this slip up as proof that she has dementia or that her mind is slipping but this woman's mind is far from slipping - her body yes is failing her but her mind is sharper then mind some days (especially days when I don't get a lot of sleep).

The age difference gets transform by her comfort and knowledge that I understand her woes.  She often comments to me about the fact that she feels I understand.  And even more importantly points out that my sermons on Sunday uplift her because she knows they come from a place of understanding.  Now I am not trying to raise myself up here, what I am trying to talk about today is the importance of understanding the other. 

At some point in childhood - usually before Kindergarten - our world transform and we begin to understand the other.  If you watch young children play they play side by side but often not right with each other; watching older children play you see how their imaginations work together and their play is enhanced by the other. 

It is important for us to come to understand and truly want to know the others.  But one human need that is real is being FELT understood.  For us as Christians this is one way in which we can truly spread God's love and Christ message.  You see Christ walked this Earth; God humbly walked amongst us so that through his life and death the Holy could say that he truly walked in our shoes.  Jesus walked amongst us and knows our pains.  Even when we feel alone and that no one could possibly know what we are going through, we must be reminded that EVEN God humbly walked as a human in order to KNOW.  

That is powerful stuff.  The need for others to understand and the desire to combat loneliness is a big part of our human story.  We all go into relationships because of this and we maintain those relationships for the same desire.  Yet, not everyone does understand.  How powerful could our Christian impact be if instead of condemning or judging we could try to understand the other? 

Sure we have not lived out every possible situations - some may never know true poverty, others may not grieve as young, some may never battle addiction or depression, others may never lose their sight or hearing, some may never be labeled for the color of their skin and others may never know the pains of war - but that does not stop us from being able to understand.  A gift of humanity is that we have the capacity for compassion and the ability to understand the other's needs. 

As Christians we are called to follow this.  God set an example - humbly walking amongst us!  It was not even beneath the GREAT DIVINE to experience the depth of humanity and human emotion.  It was not even beneath the HOLY ONE to come to the understanding of the other.  So let us not sit on our Great Than Thou horses.  Let us come to the understanding that we are called by our Creator to truly show love and understanding to all we meet. 

We are not meant to judge or put people down for their situations but instead we are called to lift up their lives and believe that through Christ anything is possible.  We are called to connect, not on the level of which we have experience but instead on the level of which we are called to understand.  I might not know what it is like to lose control of the body slowly or what it is like to need assistance to do daily skills.  But I do know how I would feel if I needed someone to help me in the bathroom, or how frustrated I can get when I am without a limb due to injury.  I can understand the isolation of the building and the mundane rhythm of each day being the same.  And yet in these states, we are called as Christians not accept them or to let them define us but instead rising above them find where the Holy is still calling us.  We are called not to judge those who suffer but instead through Christ and by being Christ's body in the world, bring life and light to those who suffer; bring meaning and love and most importantly bring to them a God who understands their pains, bore them and rose above them so that all might one day know the Kingdom.   

Today is Valentines day and the first Sunday in Lent.  Reflect on how both our individual and our relationship with God is effected by our understanding of the other and / or our willingness to put away our own selfishness.