God’s Reforming Work (October 2022 Newsletter Article)

By Lindsey Bina
Pastor, Care

Perhaps this is a strange place for this admission, but here it is: I have a love/hate relationship with Play-Doh. I love that it can give hours of fun to my kiddos and I hate how after we are finished playing, we will find bits and pieces all over our kitchen floor for the days to come.

As we approach the celebration of Reformation Day at the end of October, I’ve been thinking about Play-Doh and what it can teach us about God’s transforming work in our life. Stick with me here…

When we play with Play-Doh, we have the opportunity to create fun, squishy, beautiful things. We might even play with these beautiful creations for a while. And then, whether out of excitement or frustration, those creations might get smooshed and broken apart.

God created each of us with purpose and care, and declared God’s creation “very good.” When we experience difficulties in life, we can lose sight of God’s intention and purpose for us. We can feel broken and misshapen. God, like a potter with clay (or Play-Doh), carefully and patiently reshapes and re-forms us. And God does this not just with individual people, but with groups of people, entire churches, and even the whole world. Because one of God’s amazing promises is to make all things new.

Dear friends in Christ, perhaps you feel like a smooshed Play-Doh creation. God is not finished with you yet. God promises to take what the world might discard and reform it into something beautiful again. This is the story of promise and resurrection.

Reformation Day, writes Gail Ramshaw, is “a special day to thank God for the freedom that the word of God grants to believers and to pray that with the help of God’s Spirit, the church will be continually reformed and renewed.” It is a day that is filled with hope and possibility as we remember what God has done and what God will continue to do through the church as Christ’s body on earth.

Reformation Day is about being rooted in the truth of God’s liberating word and growing into the future. It is a day to celebrate the work of God’s grace in each of our lives and our shared work together. In order for us to live into our call to be the body of Christ in today’s world, we will need to faithfully discern how God is shaping (and reshaping) us into a beautiful creation.

Reformation – change – is at the heart of our Lutheran identity and story. It can be painful and sometimes we feel pretty smooshed. But I wonder – what might God be shaping us into? How might God be working in and through us so that the light and love of Christ may be made known to the world?

All thanks be to God for God’s endless reformation of our lives.

Join us for worship on Reformation Weekend: October 29-30, 2022!

Don’t forget to wear red!