Reformation has always been a day held with some pride in our hearts of Lutherans. 497 years ago today Martin Luther challenged the established church and did his best to stick with it while risking his life to correct the wayward ways of superiors. Their selfish thinking was threatening the message of the Church while it guaranteed the power and coffers of church leaders would grow at the expense of God’s people.
It is the way of power. The powerful seek more power. Bishops, monsignors, cardinals, popes even parish pastors are tempted to take the privilege and status of their positions and protect it before everything else they might do.
And so Reformation Day should always be a day for the entire Church to take stock. In fact, once a year might not be enough! Maybe we should remember the years of hiding which followed Luther’s brave act as the Church sought to bring him down.
Where are our temptations leading us today?
Is God’s message of love paramount?
Are we obeying the Great Commission or are we comfortable collecting people who are already much like us?
Are we serving the troubled—the ostracized, the ill, the challenged—or do they get our prayers while people of means get our programs, offerings and comfortable pews.
Take a minute today. Stretch it out over All Saints Day (tomorrow) to think about ministry.
What kind of church are we supporting? How can we keep it on track with the message of Christ?
We don’t believe in indulgences anymore. What do we believe in?