Under God’s Wing

Walking refugees silhouetted against a brick wall.

Luke 13:31-35

In this week’s lectionary text, Herod has a desire (in Greek, thel?): to capture and kill Jesus. Jesus has a desire (again, thel?): to gather and shelter Jerusalem. Two different energies, two different heart orientations: the desire to kill vs. the desire to gather and shelter.

In the last two weeks, we have witnessed horrific things during the war on Ukraine: the horror of Putin’s desire to dominate, destroy, and kill. We have also witnessed the beauty of people whose desire is to gather and shelter refugees fleeing from war.

In this passage, Jesus compares his desire to gather and shelter with that of a mother hen. It is one of the few feminine images of God in scripture. Mothering God longs to gather and shelter her children. Her love is fuller, warmer, safer, more protective than we can ever imagine. Mother God is found in the instinctive impulse to gather and shelter. 

Today, Mother God can be found in the welcoming, in the feeding, in the comforting, in the protecting and defending. When you feel that energy in your heart, that is the motherly heart of God. When you see that energy in the world, that is the motherly love of God. When you receive that kind of love from someone, that is the motherly heart of God.

We are continually invited to receive this motherly love of God, invited to allow ourselves to be gathered in and sheltered under God’s wings. We are continually invited to extend this love to others, to gather in and shelter one another. Each day, we are given a choice to align ourselves to this energetic impulse within God’s heart. 

In this time of danger, to whom can you offer safety? The safety of a listening ear, the safety of a warm hug or a hot meal, the safety of a protective, “No, that’s not okay; not on my watch!” In this time of danger, whom can we gather in and offer sanctuary, as a church? In this time of danger, who offers you a safe haven for your heart, mind, and body? How can you gather, shelter, and protect yourself?

These are heavy times, and I want to end on a lighter note: this link will take you to the story of a scientist whose life work has been the protection of whales. She tells the story of the day she herself was gathered up and sheltered by a whale. There is beauty and mystery in the world beyond our comprehension. Have hope, dear ones, in the goodness at the heart of the universe.

Deep peace and blessings.

—Anne

Rev. Anne Baxter Smith
Pastor of the Church at Southpoint

Worship Calendar

If you’re planning to join us for an in-person service, please read our Covid policy. It’s kept up to date, here.

In-Person 10:00 am on Sundays at 15639 24 Avenue, Surrey!

Sun. Mar 20  Third Sunday of Lent
Speaker: Anne Smith
You Are Worthy
Luke 13: 1-9

Sun. Mar 27  Fourth Sunday of Lent
Speaker: Anne Smith
Prodigal Grace (All In service)
Luke 15: 1-3, 11b-32

Sun. Apr 3  Fifth Sunday of Lent
Speaker: Anne Smith
Brazen Acts of Beauty
John 12: 1-8

Sun. Apr 10 Palm Sunday
Guest speaker: Nadia VanderKuip
Even the Stones Cry Out
Luke 19: 28-40

Fri. Apr 15   Good Friday
Watch this space for our Good Friday offering.

Sun. Apr 17 Easter Sunday
Speaker: Anne Smith
An Expansive Life
Luke 24: 1-12

Sun. Apr 24 All OUT 
Good Seed Sunday!

New to Southpoint?

At Southpoint, it all begins with God’s love. Just as a plant grows, it receives sunshine, so we grow as we receive God’s love. At Southpoint, we are growing in our capacity to love God, ourselves, one another, and creation.

We seek to be a community of grace that is intentional yet organic, spacious yet authentic, grace-filled yet accountable. * We are fully welcoming. *

We encourage relationships rather than run programs, yet we recognize the importance of intentionality and structure as we nurture life together.

As a community, we seek to put our love in action. We value helping out on Sunday mornings, sharing food, and showing up in hard times. We keep our church life simple so folk have time to build relationships with family, friends, and neighbours. We encourage folk to serve in tangible ways within the wider community. We rent space rather than own a building, allowing us to do more with less, supporting missions at home and abroad.

Curious to know more? If you’re reading this on Facebook, please visit our website (southpoint.ca) to learn more about us! If you’d like to really peek inside, sign up for our weekly Southpoint News, a MailChimp distributed email—you can unsubscribe anytime and will not be added to our contacts list. To reach out by email please write to office@southpoint.ca.

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