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 FROM THE PASTORS DESK

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.           Hebrews 12:1-2a

I am a firm believer in the KISS principle, you know, the directive to Keep It Simple Stupid. This acronym was reportedly coined by Kelly Johnson, lead engineer at the Lockheed Skunk Works (creators of the Lockheed U-2 and SR-71 Blackbird spy planes, among many others). As a lead aircraft engineer, he knew that it was imperative that an aircraft must be repairable by an average mechanic in the field under combat conditions with only the given tools.

I would echo Mr. Johnson’s belief when it comes to understanding the things of God. Armed with one book, the Bible, and looking to one God in Jesus, we should be able to fix any broken places in our lives, and indeed, in all the world. Too often, however, we rely on human opinion, on personal belief. I believe that we more than ever, need to get back to the basics of our faith in Christ.

Through my years in seminary, we learned about many of the greats of Christian theology as we studied the very nature of God. Above all others, the name Karl Barth, a great German theologian stood head and shoulders above the rest. Barth has been called “the most outstanding and consistently evangelical theologian that the world has seen in modern times.”

In 1962, Barth visited the America, lecturing at Princeton Theological Seminary and the University of Chicago. During his trip he was asked to summarize the theological meaning of the millions of words in his classic book Christian Dogma. Barth thought for a moment and said this:

“Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.”

It’s the KISS principle in action. At its heart the gospel is a simple message pointing to Christ as the ONE who loves us with a perfect, godly love.

In this day and age when we have a tendency to elevate the importance of world leaders, it is so important to remember the author and perfecter of our faith, and that is Jesus. In the months ahead, I want to challenge you to read the story of Jesus found in the gospels (Good News) of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Don’t just read them, embrace them, meditate, pray on them, let then envelop your soul.

More than any time in my life, I am convinced that song writer Burt Bacharach had it right, when he wrote, “What the world needs now is love sweet love, that’s the only thing that there’s just too little of.” But I would take his understanding one step further. I believe that the love the world needs is modelled in one and one only, in Jesus. When all is said and done, one love remains…………Jesus. Give me Jesus!

In Christ’s love,

Pastor Jeff