16 I pray that out of God’s glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
God’s love is a love that reaches deep down to the core of who we are. This is a gift and also a challenge. If we are open to God’s transforming love it will bring to light that which is held in darkness. That is what this week’s Sexual Assault Awareness “It’s time to talk about it” emphasis is all about. I see God at work in us as a community finding faith and hope to have these conversations. Sexual violence is part of many of our stories and being surrounded by a community that wants to bring healing and hope in the midst of violence speaks to the love of Christ. I have seen God at work in conversations around sexual violence, in the Sexual Violence Response Working Group creatively and diligently drafting a policy and procedures, and in various bodies at Redeemer working to refine the recommendations.
This week, we begin Advent together at Redeemer (a little earlier than most!), and the theme is LOVE. Come to chapel on Wednesday and hear Dr. Syd Hielema speak to us about “wise love” and challenge us not to settle for “dumb love.”
In this season of Advent may God prepare our hearts and remove whatever hinders us from knowing the love that God has for us.