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Friday, September 28, 2018

October 2018

"You be You" said Professor Joel Biermann at our recent district-wide pastors' conference. "You be you" means: find your truth, pursue your own desires, choose your own reality and live by your autonomous self-governing way. Dr. Biermann discussed this saying to present an accurate picture of what has become of our society today.

Stemming from the seventeenth century, enlightenment thinker, Rene Descartes famous words, "I think, therefore I am". Or in our most current context, "you be you. You are encouraged to recenter your life on yourself rather than God and you will find what you are looking for. Self-fulfillment, self-satisfaction are a few goals that man attempts to find in "You be you".

This reminds me of my children whenever we went on a long road trip. As I was driving the minivan, they would always ask , "are we there yet?". And with great reluctance, I would respond, "No, not yet, we have a ways to go". And as a few minutes passed, like a broken record, they would ask the same question and I would respond with the same answer.

So it is with life. "Are we there yet?". Some will define "there" as a big house or car. Others will define "there" as our reputation, social status, and career. "You be you" the world says, but will we find what we truly need? Though the allure is freedom, prosperity, and fullness, this path will inevitably lead to confusion, despair and utter hopelessness.

"Freedom is found in relationships", Dr. Biermann said. And so true this is! For the world will say that your greatest relationship is "You be you", yet as we look at scripture our greatest and most fulfilling, satisfying, freedom-giving relationship is found outside of ourselves.

"If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free" [Jn 8:32].

The truth is, the Lord answers "Are we there yet?" with the sending of His Son. No longer are we wondering if we are there yet but through Jesus' death and resurrection, He has delivered us to a grace-filled alreadyness. Through His body and blood shed on the Cross we live in the true alreadyness. That is, forgiveness of sins, eternal life and salvation. No longer are we toiling over the quest of self-fulfillment but through Jesus' words on the Cross, "It is finished", we have received the greatest fulfillment in the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.

"You be you" is not defined by self but by the promises of God. "You be you" in the work of Christ. "You be you" in the blessed waters of Holy Baptism. "You be you", in the holy meal of Christ's body and blood given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins. For by the grace of God, you have been set free! "Yet to all received Him, to those who believe in His name, He has given the right to become children of God" [Jn1:12]. This is you!

So go forth in His name as you live a life- already fulfilled. Loving and serving your neighbor in the alreadyness that has been given to you by the merits of Christ and the Cross.

Glory to God in the Highest! Have a blessed October!

✝️ Pastor Jeong  

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