Saturday, November 4, 2017

God Has a Dream: Reflections on All Saints (RCL All Saints A, 5 November 2017)

On All Saints Sunday Saint Faith's welcomes Samantha and her daughters, Callie and Adelaide, into the community of friends who share God's dream.  Here is my letter to Callie and Adelaide.

All Saints Sunday
5 November 2017

Dear Callie and Adelaide,

         I hope that in a few years from now you will sit down with your parents and read this letter together.  Because you and your mother are being baptized today, it is important that I share some thoughts with you about what has begun in your lives.  But to do that I have to start at the very beginning.

God has a dream.

         Long before anything existed God had a dream.  In this dream God saw a vast universe of galaxies, stars and planets in their orbits.  On one of those planets God dreamed of oceans and continents, days and nights, plants and animals.  God saw that this dream was good, in fact, very good.

         But God wanted someone to share this dream with.  And so, God caused human beings, people like you and I, to come into existence.  God gave us a very special gift straight from God’s own self --- God gave us the power to love just as God loves.

         This very special gift was important because God’s dream is not yet finished.  For the oceans and continents, the days and the nights, the plants and the animals to flourish, God needs human beings to do our part to make this dream come true.  But people do not always live up to God’s expectations.  We do not always love as God loves us.  But God does not give up on the dream nor on us.

To make God’s dream flourish God calls people together to live and to work for the dream.

         Over the many years since God caused human beings to come into existence, God has tried again and again to call us together so that we can live and work for the dream.  Often God has asked particular people to lead others in living and working for the dream:  Noah and his family, Abraham and Sarah, Moses and then a number of people we call prophets who spoke of God’s dream to people and reminded them of how to make this dream grow.

         After all these people had shared the dream, God knew that there was still something more to be done.  So God sent Jesus among us to show us what it means to live, to work and to love as God lives, works and loves.  Through the ministry of Jesus God brought together people who had not heard about God’s dream.  These people did their best to share the message of Jesus and the dream that God had made known to us in Jesus.  We now call these people ‘the church’, a word that means ‘people who have come together to live and to work for God’s dream’.

Today you and your mother join the people who live and work for God’s dream.

         Callie and Adelaide, living and working for God’s dream is not easy.  We need the support of our family and of a great community of friends who love the dream as much as God does.  Today you and your mother will join one part of this great community of friends by making some promises.  You will promise to join your new friends

  • in learning more about God’s dream by listening to the stories about God’s dream and by learning how to listen for God’s voice speaking in your heart;
  • in standing up for God’s dream and in being honest when you fall short;
  • in sharing God’s dream with other people who have not heard about the dream or who have forgotten what the dream is;
  • in loving everyone as God loves us, not just in words but in action;
  • in helping every person become the person God wants her or him to become;
  • in tending the earth that God has given us, so that the oceans and the land, the plants and the animals, the air and the water sustain life.

         God’s dream is a very big dream and it will take a lot of work to make God’s dream come true for our world.  But God does not expect you or me to do all the work by ourselves.  That’s why you and I are part of this community of friends who share God’s dream.  When we work together, each one of us using the special gifts God has given us, then the dream takes shape, sometimes in ways that everyone can see, sometimes in ways that only a few people can see.

         Callie and Adelaide, I am very happy that you and your mother are becoming my friends in living and working for God’s dream.  I know that you will help me see some of God’s dream that I have not seen.  I promise, as do all of your friends who are here today, to help you see what we have seen of God’s dream.  It’s a beautiful dream and, day by day, it’s a dream that is coming true, not just for you and me, but for all of God’s creation.

         May you always know the joy of this dream and may you always know the love and support of your family and all of God’s friends who share the dream.

Always your friend in the dream,


Saint Faith's Anglican Church
Vancouver BC

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