Advent 2021: A Season Of Healing And Hope – December 1
November 30, 2021
Hold on to Your Song
(Rev. Carolyn Matthews is pastor of Christian Education at Lakeshore Avenue Baptist Church, Oakland, CA)
As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. 13 Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 14 Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom; and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to God. 17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.Colossians 3:12-17
A few years ago we read the book by Lewis Smedes, The Art of Forgiving. Holding on to hurts and wrongs damages us more than it does the other person. It is not an easy path, but it is necessary if we are to know peace and to live at peace with one another. Our scripture text above seals the reason for forgiveness: “just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.”
Besides, if we hold on to hurts and allow them to dictate how we feel about one another, how will we be able to “sing our song?” Of all the times in the church year, Advent and Christmas are the times for the singing of songs – for bringing and sharing joy with one another through the gift of music.
With all that is going on in the world, it can be easy to get lost in the turmoil and angst of day-to-day life. It is in these times when we need to heed the words of the scripture: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.” Some of those words: “God so loved the world he gave his one and only son;” “ I have come that you might have life and have it abundantly;” “my peace I leave with you.” Let us hold on to our song this season and sing it for ourselves and one another.