Seventh Sunday after Epiphany; Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18; Matthew 5:38-48 – How do I make a difference?” It’s what the Bible is all about in good times and bad. In the beginning, at creation, the Holy One puts humans like you and me in the Garden of Eden. To till and keep it. To nurture balanced and abundant life in all creation. The rest of the story isn’t perfect bliss. People mess up. There are consequences, and circumstances beyond our control. And God loves through it all.
Sixth Sunday after Epiphany; Genesis 2:4b-25; Matthew 5:13-16 – It probably began for us all with something like stickers and finger paints, crayons and markers. As toddlers, before we really speak, we make the crazy squiggles and circles, and tentative strokes on paper. Maybe random lines or dots. Before we conceive of anything particular we’re trying to express, our personalities start to show in how we work—with controlled detail, or unbounded exuberance.