Tradition

Dear Traditionalists,

I get an inner giggle when I hear the phrase “I am not into religious tradition, I am into spirituality.” We all have traditions, they are the buckets which hold our life experiences. How many of you are dressing up for Halloween or buying candy to hand out?That is a tradition. It is a means of communal interaction where we admire and love children we otherwise would not interact with. As we move through Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, even the most verbally anti-traditionalist among us will repeat certain rituals as a means of relating to those most dear to them.

Leander Keck says that too many contemporary Christians have an inadequate appreciation for the power of the Christian tradition. We are, “like inheritors of an estate who camped in the yard because they neither knew nor cared how to live in the house.”

Indeed, some best-selling authors for the religious market and religious leaders themselves ere, in effect , if not in intent, telling the churches not to live in the house. Repeatedly, church people were told that what their forebears had emphasized was of dubious value. (Leander Keck, “The Church Confident” Abingdon Press 1993, page 16-17).

On Sunday we lift up the names of the Saints who have gone on to the dimension of the Kingdom of God that is to come. They are the ones who Christ used to shape us spiritually. It is a tradition carried on in congregations all over the world for hundreds of years. “All Saints Sunday” is a precious container of the Lord which is filled with the living witness of the Saints who walk among us.

For further reflection see Matthew 5:1-13 and John 11:17-44.

Prayer : Thanks to all the Saints who have called upon my Mother Beverly, or prayed for her during her current hospital stay. Our family hopes that she is transitioned to a rehab facility by mid-week.

Still in one peace,
Pastor David J. Jensen


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