I look forward to Sunday’s Congregational Meeting and Service project. It’s always a blessing to reflect on the year that passed and look forward to what’s ahead. This year even more so. I’m not sure pride has a place in church life, but if it does, you can be very proud of what you’ve done in 2022.

In my sermon Last Sunday, reflecting on the killing of Tyre Nichols, I quoted the Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III. Writing to his son, who is Black, Moss named a most tragic truth, “You are valued by God, but not by this world.”

I encouraged us to hear the beatitudes in it. God’s blessing on your life may not be honored by everyone, but it is your true identity. Blessed are YOU, even when people revile you. Watch Rev. Moss’s sermonic film, “A Letter to My Son.” (20 mins).

This Sunday, the Sermon on the Mount continues with the words “Let your light so shine before others that they may see your good works and glorify your father in heaven.”

We say these words at the end of a baptism. Once someone has been washed in the waters of God’s grace and claimed as beloved – only then – are they sent to share God’s love out to the world. It’s a good day to remember you are not asked to give anything you haven’t already received. And it’s not about you. Grace upon grace.