by Joel Bascom
Minnesota native and radio icon, Garrison Keillor, made up a list called “You Might Be a Lutheran If…” While many of these entries are specific to Lutheranism, one is also very applicable to Anglicans. “You Might be a Lutheran if you’re watching Star Wars in the theatre and when they say, ‘May the Force be with you,’ the theatre replies, ‘and also with you.’” This joke combines two important parts of my life: Anglicanism and Star Wars. People who are Anglicans or Star Wars fans have certain phrases and common language that not only entertain them, but also help distinguish how devoted another person is to the culture. We know someone is a diehard devotee of Star Wars if, when fed an obscure line of dialogue, they can answer with the next line of dialogue.
It may be a leap to say this, but the community of faith is very much like this. We take comfort in the rhythms of our speech patterns and rituals involving language. Our Anglican church calendar is built around the notion that walking through rituals year after year brings familiarity. But since we only observe each season once a year, there is still newness to each season in the calendar. As we begin a four-week study on the book of Psalms this weekend, I wanted this sense of language and familiarity to be part of what we bring to our study. My hope is that as we look at four Psalms out of the total 150, we can begin to see the ways that the community of faith (Israel in this case) draws upon its own history and its language as it worships the Lord in community. There are so many great literary connections that the psalmists use not only to look back at what God has done, but also to give comfort for what lies ahead. Since we still use Psalms for the purpose of worship and devotion, it is meaningful to dig deeper into the Psalms and think more about who God was for His people Israel, and who he continues to be for his covenant community today.
Hope to see you Sunday! We will be meeting in the conference room right near the sanctuary during the second service.