Given by Rev. Michael Vaughn July 5, 2020
The writings of Paul in Romans is densely packed and exacting. He uses so many “I”s, “me”s, and “my”s. This hyper-focus on these words represents our personal struggles. Today, current events bring us to the edge of cultural awareness. Things are changing and we must think anew. According to the church calendar, we are in ordinary times. Everyone can agree, we are living on the edge of extraordinary times. As Winston Churchill said, “Never let a good crisis go to waste.” An unexamined life is not worth living. Sometimes it takes something extraordinary to bring us new perspectives on our life. We gain a better understanding of ourselves. Paul’s writing shows that our lack of understanding of ourselves is narcissistic. It can sometimes take someone outside our circle to call attention to things that need to be examined. Sin is not just what we have done but also we have left undone and left unexamined. Regarding church, sometimes a lot more is said than done. Like in the movie, The Usual Suspects, we look for someone else to blame and divert our attention away from our own actions/inaction. If we can blame someone or something else, we do not look any further and miss a chance of self-reflection. During these current times, we have the opportunity to figure out a new plan of action, a new direction. It is not the I or me, but the our in faith. We are called to be the unusual suspects. It is not a rewrite but a repent.