In this season of new beginnings…years, semesters, presidencies, (insert your new beginning here), we must remember that as people of faith, our strength comes from Christ. Our strength to endure. Our strength to persevere. Our strength to hope. Our strength to dream. Our strength to be courageous. Our strength to succeed. Remembering this requires surrendering our egos – our desire for control (our savior complex) – to the only one who has the power to save: Jesus.
I have a small prayer cross that was a gift from a dear Korean friend. On that cross in Korean are the words “Only Jesus.” Remembering that it is only Jesus who has the power to save…us, our institutions, our church, our government, our nation, our world, etc…necessitates that we also remember Jesus is the only thing we should hold onto. Everything else is temporary. Everything else will fade away. What matters is Jesus’ steadfast and enduring love for us – for every single one of us – just as we are.
Yes, in the midst of our flaws and failures, fears and temptations, joys and sorrows — in the midst of our humanity — Jesus looks on us with love. Jesus takes us by the hand and says, ‘I will lead you. I’ve got this. I’ve got YOU.’
We have received an invitation! Jesus invites us to join him in the creation of a new reality. Each of us has within us a glimpse of this new reality. None of us has the whole picture. We must all work together!
Our own cropped image rests in our gifts and passions — the places where we see what is and long for what could be, the places where we find delight and joy. Uncovering our cropped image requires prayer — listening for and to the Holy One. Once uncovered, we must share what we see with others. Sharing what we see requires us to be vulnerable and open, daring and courageous.
But it is the only way we can discover how our piece intersects with others’ and it is the only way we can help to create a new reality. We can’t do it alone. We need each other. We need Jesus.