PASTOR’S CORNER, Brad Bennett, First United Methodist Church, Liberal

 

‘Doom-scrolling’ is a term that’s been coined in recent years to describe the act of endless scrolling down social media of every sort while viewing all the bad news in the world. Doom-scrolling can become a repetitive habit that is very difficult to break . . . until our bodies rebel. Many   people, who doom-scroll a lot, eventually experience eye-strain with headaches, blurred vision, along with an elevation of fear and stress and depression and anxiety. What may have started as an attempt to stay informed of current events can lead to a person spiraling into despair from exposure to all the gloom and doom in the world.

The pandemic certainly brought doom-scrolling to an “off-the-charts” level for many people, but looking for doomsday news in our world has been around since God created  homo sapiens. Especially election years like this one bring volumes of “he-said-she-said” quotations or eye-catching and candied video clips that range from the virtuous to the vile. One brilliant solution is to simply turn it all off and put a stop to all the clutter and noise. But without a better focus or devotion that kind of fasting can lead to isolation.

“How good and pleasant it is

when God’s people  live together in unity!

It is like precious oil

poured on the head,

running down

on the beard,

running down

on Aaron’s beard,

down on the collar of his robe.

It is as if

the dew of Hermon

were falling

on Mount Zion.

For there the Lord

bestows his blessing,

even life forevermore.”

 

So, while winter weather whimpers away, spring has sprung in Liberal. In front of our facilities a non-bearing pear tree is blasting blooms while producing an aromatic scent that is pleasing for some and the primary cause of sneezing for more than a few others. I stand amazed as seemingly millions of the flowering buds come and go with great delight for what may seem to many people to be a fleeting moment that can take your breath away - breath taking magnificence.

Non-bearing pear trees do not produce the pear fruit that some people expect to see and eat. But these beautiful trees of God’s creation stand in stark contrast to the vicious cycles of negativity that can overtake our lives when left unchecked by God’s amazing love, mercy, and grace.

The fruit the tree  produces are the amazingly  vibrant and aromatic buds that are full of life for such a time as this. People can choose live life in that way too. Rather than doom -scrolling your life away, choose to live the faith that Jesus lived and taught. When you live in Jesus’ way of life, your life will be fruitful and fragrant and vibrant and full of life, so that everyone can enjoy day after day after day.

Indeed how good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!

 

“Our humble sovereign and savior is risen!

Keep spreading

this good, good news

with the same Spirit

who is Jesus!

Christ is risen!

Spring has sprung in Liberal!”

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19th June, 2024 - 19:29
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