Trinity Lutheran Church
Pastor’s Monthly Letter
I found myself a little bored one evening this June. As I was sitting on the couch I decided to scour my library and find something to read. As my eyes glazed over the titles printed on the spines of books, my eyes were drawn to the smallest book I own, Fear of the Other, No Fear in Love, by William H. Willimon. The book is little more than one hundred pages. So, I cracked it open and started reading. There are a couple of paragraphs that stood out to me that I want to share.
“Joe would do anything do anything for his family. He was a great husband and father,” a speaker
intoned at a funeral. Goodness towards one’s family is morally noteworthy? As Eddie Murphy complained
of folk who brag about how much they love their families, “That’s your job!”
Of course I love my wife, my children; they look like me. When I have loved the other, as Christ has
loved me in my otherness and enmity, then that’s a specifically Christian, countercultural, virtually miraculous
It wasn’t that long ago that I read the joke, “Do you know what the greatest miracle Jesus ever preformed was? Having twelve good friends in his 30s!” That joke reminded me that miracles don’t have to be supernatural. They can be as natural or unnatural as loving someone you hate. When I read the last line of the paragraph above, “virtually miraculous love” I couldn’t help but agree with that analysis. The love that God calls us toward. The love that God has for us is a miracle. In Matthew 5 Jesus says, “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven.” We can’t walk on water. We can’t heal people by a command. We can’t raise the dead. But we can love our enemies. We can love strangers. We can love those who hate us. So, let us be miracle workers. Let the preachers not only say that we were a good parent or friend. Let the preacher say above our casket, “he/she loved others, enemies, strangers as God love him/her.” Let us be miracle workers brothers and sister.