Contact  |  Member Login
Idocs Guide to HTML

  Presbyter's Message

Cross: A Sign of Reconciliation and Healing


Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me (Ps. 51:10)

Alexander Maclaren once said, "The alchemy of divine love can extract sweet perfumes of penitence and praise out of the filth of sin". This is illustrated in Psalm 51, one of the best known "Penitential Psalms"; some of the others are, Psalms 6; 25; 32; 38; 130; and 143.

Psalm 51 explains the struggle of David, who after a dialogue with Nathan, realized his sin, and the guilt of a broken fellowship with God (2 Samuel 12:1-14). What we see here is the mirror of humanity struggling for reconciliation and healing with God, with oneself and the other. This is the heart of the biblical story in its different forms and nuances.

When we pay attention to the Psalms (particularly when we read in our native languages), we discover that we are in the faith, grow in the faith, but we also falter in our faith. In Martin Luther's words, "we are both saint and sinner at the same time". The Psalms share the breadth of human emotion and experience. No wonder they were very popular with the early monastic communities, who used them extensively for reflection and worship. In the words of one of them St. John of Karpathos, "Do all in your power not to fall, for the strong athlete should not fall. But if you do fall, get up again at once and continue the contest. Even if you fall a thousand times… rise up again each time."

David, described as "a man after God's own heart" (Acts 13:22), shares his experience in one of the most poignant expressions in the same Psalm, "Indeed, I was born guilty, a sinner when my mother conceived me" (51:5). The articulation in v.10, is therefore one of the most powerful calls for reconciliation and healing. It talks about the work of almighty power (create), the need for renewal in terms of the essential principle of a new nature, which is possible with God's presence and Spirit, and the ability to be firm and not yield to temptation (new and right spirit).

As we begin another time of reflection and action with the Lenten Season, we are called to look intently at the Cross. In the New Testament, the Cross is not simply an isolated instrument of the death of Jesus, but brings to mind, a wide range of theological, spiritual, social and political affirmations both then and in our context. The Cross should be seen in the light of the total Christ event, the death and resurrection of our Jesus Christ, which provides us with new meaning about the saving act of God (Romans 4:24-25; 6:4-5; 2 Corinthians 4:10-11). The very essence of the saving act of God is the remarkable idea that it is God "who reconciled us to himself through Christ", the result he "gives us the ministry of reconciliation" (2 Corinthians 2:18). In the Gospels and elsewhere in the New Testament, the death and resurrection of Jesus becomes a paradigm for Christian discipleship, and the follower of Jesus Christ must take up the cross of Jesus (Mark 8:31).

It is thus appropriate that our celebration of the Healing Ministry Sunday is a good way to ponder before we enter into the Season of Lent. We need to ask honest questions about the very nature of healing, which is mostly understood and explained as physical. What we need is wholistic healing, with a space to vent our bitterness, anger, loneliness, and despair. So glad that an initial conversation with Health Care Professionals with Dr. Paul Salins, was very positive and enriching, and see signs of new beginnings of facilitating Professional Networks in our church to support the elderly, the poor and the marginalized.

Our efforts with reconciliation, healing and counseling among younger couples married for about 10 years, has started on a positive note with the Young Couples Fellowship, an initiative of the Youth Leadership Team in our church. What we aim with these ministerial initiatives is to provide spaces for shared interest and the need in the church.

I am grateful for all the prayers, encouragement and support from you as a people of God.

Let us journey on…

Your Presbyter
Rev. Dr. Dexter S. Maben

Presbyter's Message
Bible readings for worship   service
Church ministry at a glance
Monthly worship services   calendar
Church Choir
Sunday School
Calender for the Month
Youth fellowship
Women's fellowship
News Bulletin


History | Committees | News Bulletin |
St. Andrews School | Choir | Sunday School

© 2019 - St. Andrew's Church Bangalore
Designed By : Radical Networks.

St. Andrews Church
No.27, Cubbon Road, Bangalore-560001

Phone: +91-80-25591 874