Put God in the center
July 19, 2010
by Rev. Lee Hallstrom, Light of Christ Lutheran Church, Delano

“I’m looking for purpose and meaning in my life,” the woman said to her friend. “I just simply go through the motions day in and day out and don’t feel like I make a difference or that I matter.”

God hurts when anyone of us feels this way. After all, God created us with great purpose and meaning. God intends for us to have a very clear sense of who we are and what we’re called to do in this world.

We don’t create our identity. We don’t manufacture our purpose or meaning. They are gifts. And at the same time, they are calls.

We are God’s people, wonderfully made by God to be stewards of life. God has placed us in this place to shine with the love and light of God in the midst of this broken world.

God calls us to care for ourselves, to reach out to others, and to be attentive to the creation.

We carry with us wherever we go the story of a God who raises the dead, a God who never gives up on us, a God who promises hope to each of us. How important and meaningful is this mission in a world plagued by fear, violence, and division.

But one problem we face is that we exist in a culture that sees God simply as another menu item in life. We have work, school, sports, leisure, church, etc. Church is simply another activity we do or another organization to which we belong. We often fail to see God as the center and norm for our lives.

We may not see God and the church as the source of our identity, shaping and framing how we live at home, work, school, or sports. Because we may see God and the church simply as a menu item, we are left with the task then of trying to identify a purpose and meaning for our lives.

God, however, invites us to a centered life. God invites us to center our lives around God, the faith, and our community of faith. As we welcome God to be the center of our lives, then we truly become aware of the truth that it is God who has a grip on us.

Also, through our immersion in our community of faith (church) and the sharing of our gifts, God goes to work on our hearts, filling us with hope, joy, peace, and fulfillment. These gifts of God then play out at home, at work, at school, on the sports team, and in whatever we do.

In the coming days and weeks, be reminded that your life has great meaning and purpose as you welcome God to the center of your life.

May all joy be yours in believing!