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Vicar's Message - COGSLK - Church of the Good Shepherd, Thimbirigasyaya, Colombo 5, Sri Lanka

Vicar's Message! - November 2020

FROM THE DESK OF VEN JAYANTH JEYAVEERASINGAN

My dear people of God,

The passages for our meditation in the month of November are Isaiah 5:1-7 and John 15:1-17.


The month of November is also a month of remembrance, where we pray for all our loved ones, and commit and commend them into the caring personality of our creator God.


Firstly, our prayers go out for the whole world and, in particular, for our motherland at this moment of great crisis in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

'Yea though I walk through the valley of darkness, I
fear no evil for Thou art with me, thy rod and thy staff
they comfort me' (Psalm 23:4).

This is a word of consolation and hope for all of us. God’s allpowerfulness is available to us as He is our Physician and Healer.

The month of November is also a month of remembrance, where we pray for all our loved ones, and commit and commend them into the caring personality of our creator God.

When we look at both the passages above for our meditation, the background tells us that Israel and Judah were involved in sheep farming and managing vineyards. In Isaiah 5, God tells Israel and Judah that He cared for them in a very unique way. He cared for them as they were the vine in the vineyard. God looked after the vineyard as follows: He planted them on a fertile soil having dug and cleared the stones. He built a watchtower to overlook the choicest vines, which He had planted to look over the winepress. As Israel and Judah strayed from God, He compared them to the vineyard that did not bear fruit as it ought. God says that because the vineyard was not fruitful, He will take away the hedge and the vineyard will be destroyed, the walls will be broken and the plants trampled. It will become a desolate place. The plants will not be pruned. Thorns and thistles will grow and no rain will come. In the same way, because Israel and Judah neglected God, they will be judged by God. In this Old Testament passage, we see the negative attitude of the people of God. Where God looked for delight from His people, He saw bloodshed and war instead.

When we move on to the gospel passage in the New Testament, the God of history is more positive towards human-beings. He talks of being a God of relationship, and Jesus Christ says that he and the Father have a special relationship to human-beings by conveying to us that we are the branches, He is the vine and the Father is the gardener. This organic relationship between the vine and the branches are brought out by the gardener and the luscious fruits. In the same way, when we have a relationship with God the Father and Jesus Christ, we bear fruit for God and the Church. It is very unique. If we are to bear fruit, we, as human-beings, have to have the mind of Christ and have a relationship with the Father.

Finally, to be fruitful, we have three points to consider:

John 15:13 – the first step to be fruitful is ‘greater love hath no one than this that he lays down his life for his friend,’ and going another step higher to ‘lay down your life for your foe’. The important aspect in this step is to be a part of everybody in our lives.

John 15:14-15 summarises ’. . . because you do what I say, hereafter you will be my friends’. In this example, we have an organic relationship with God and that makes us friends with Him.

John 15:16 – ‘You did not choose me, but I chose you, appointed you to go and bear fruit. . .’. This step talks about loving everybody and that becomes or makes us fruitful.

During this time of international crisis, may God keep us all safe.


With love and prayers

Fr Jayanth


Church of the Good Shepherd, Colombo 5
 
Church of the Good Shepherd, Colombo 5
 
Church of the Good Shepherd, Colombo 5
 
 

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