Series: Return and Restore
A Kairos Moment in a Chronos World (The Gathering Worship)
February 21, 2021 | Bishop David Graves
Passage: Mark 1:9-15
Return to the LORD, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and relents from punishing. --Joel 2:13
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me. Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and
sustain in me a willing spirit. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will return to you. --Psalm 51:10-13
At a time when it is tempting to isolate our hearts as well as our bodies, how important it is to hear the Holy Spirit calling us back into relationship. During a season in which we have wrestled with our reality
and grappled with our grief, where do we turn for hope? What are we to do with ourselves and with our situation?
The Word is return.
Return to God, who is gracious and merciful. Though our sins may distance us, God has a plan for our reunion. It is time for a new heart, a willing spirit, and thus, a new life altogether.
With its customary emphasis on truth-telling and self-examination, this season of Lent invites us to once again return to God in worship, in study, in service and sacrifice, in confession and in pardon. The
message is clear and simple: when we return to God, we are restored by God.
Do not cast me away from your presence we pray.
I will not, says the Lord. I will not, I have not, and I shall not. I cannot return to you, however, because I never left you. Thus, for this relationship to be restored, you will need to return to me. That is the call.
Return…and be restored…with joy!
We are glad that you have returned to worship with us today. Welcome home.
Let us repent, rejoice, and be glad…