Confess Jesus As Lord
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death-even death on a cross. Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
~ Philippians 2:5-11
O Lord, who else or what else can I desire but you? You are my Lord, Lord of my heart, mind, and soul. You know me through and through. In and through you everything that is finds its origin and goal. You embrace all that exists and care for it with divine love and compassion. Why, the, do I keep expecting happiness and satisfaction outside of you? Why do I keep relating to you as one of my many relationships, instead of my only relationship in which all other ones are grounded? Why do I keep looking for popularity, respect from others, success, acclaim, and sensual pleasures? Why Lord, is it so hard for me to make you the only one? Why do I keep hesitating to surrender myself totally to you?
~ Henri J. M. Nouwen
At the name of Jesus every knee shall bow,
every tongue confess him King of glory now;
‘tis the Father’s pleasure we should call him Lord,
Who from the beginning was the mighty Word.
~ Caroline M. Noel, 1870
The amazing truth of the kingdom is its availability. The kingdom is not for buying. It is not exclusive. It can’t be hoarded. It succumbs, not to power, not to birthright, not even to the magnitude and sparkle of one’s achievements. It is available to those born of the Spirit, those imbued with a simple faith. It requires one possession, freedom. The freedom to recognize kingdom-events and to follow a kingdom-course.
~ Joan Puls
Only after the Resurrection did the early Church call Jesus “Lord,” meaning the “divine one,” the one equal to God, rather than “Lord” meaning “master.” Before that, as Jesus walked the earth, talked to people, attended the synagogue, went to dinner parties, preached on hillsides, hung on the cross, Jesus had been teacher, master, rabbi, prophet, son of David, King of the Jews – all titles the Jewish people knew well. The Jesus called Lord is the image of a powerful God who does not impose even goo. This God lives to be poured out in creation and uses no force to have it accepted. This God excludes no one, bathes the whole world, believer and nonbeliever alike, with the fruits of the earth, the joy of life, the goodness of creation. This Lord is the presence of God among the people, not the presence of force or pomp or prestige among the powerless. It is this Jesus we call Lord.
~ Joan Chittister
Up unto thee, our living Head,
let us in all things grow;
till thou hast made us free indeed
and spotless here below.
~ Charles Wesley, 1742
These reflections are for use during the week of September 27-October 3 and are based on the scriptures for worship on September 27.
Joyce D. Sohl, Laywoman-in-Residence
Joyce D. Sohl has been Laywoman-in-Residence since 2009 as a full-time volunteer. She retired as CEO of United Methodist Women in 2004. She is the author of 4 books, a teacher, retreat leader, writer and non-professional musician. Here at the Center her work is in the area of Spirituality & the Arts with such programs as Tuesdays in the Chapel, Vespers & All That Jazz, Poet’s Corner, quarterly retreats, and art exhibits.