This past week I read an article highlighting a recent recommendation that doctors screen all adult patients under 65 for anxiety, guidance that “highlights the extraordinary stress levels that have plagued the United States since the start of the pandemic”. I was reflecting on that in light of the text we meditated on yesterday (listen to the sermon here) that ended in Adam and Eve leaving Eden filled with shame and fear. One scholar, reflecting on this famous story wrote this:
It is worth noting that no one dies in this text. This is not (primarily) a reflection on death but on troubled, anxiety-ridden life. That is a greater problem than death, both in our own context and in the world of this narrative
At the heart of the story in Genesis 3 is the impact of Adam and Eve believing the lie that God can’t be trusted and therefore isn’t good. In his book “The Soul of Shame” Curt Thompson reflects on this passage and the impact it had on Eve (and Adam). By telling Eve that God doesn’t want you to be like him (Gen 3:5) it means God doesn’t want you to have what he has, to be as close to him as you think he does which in the final analysis means: you aren’t as important as you think. “You. Are. Not. Enough.” That is where shame lives and where anxiety flourishes. Of course there are lots of objective, external reasons why people are struggling right now, but they are all downstream of that fateful encounter in which the lie that God doesn’t love us has infected each of us, requiring us to regularly come back to the truth that in Christ there is no condemnation (Romans 8:1), a truth that must be reinforced by strong, loving friendships. So this week, who do you know that needs to be assured that they are enough, and what can you do to make sure they know it?
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.Romans 8:1
Live at W83 featuring Quatour Caèl
This is the first of a series of concerts intended to provide a beautiful concert experience for our West Side neighbors. This concert will feature the Quatour Caèl quartet performing works by Beethoven and Ravel. The evening will be followed by a wine and cheese reception in the W83 gallery.
- Have lunch with your neighbors, Oct 2: Join us for a post-service Neighbors Lunch to meet other Redeemer West Siders living around you and meet your pastoral care team! This first one in the series this fall will be for Redeemer West Siders who live on 110th St and north in upper Manhattan, in the Bronx, Westchester and New Jersey.
- Register for Following Jesus in your 20s, Oct, 9: Launch a new or enhanced life of following Jesus. Gain practices that navigate a lifetime of discipleship by learning how people grow at Redeemer West Side. This class gives us a foundation to live on as a follower of Jesus and helps us understand the greater Christian story we are part of.
- Getting married?, Oct 15: Plan on attending Redeemer’s Premarital Seminar. You don’t have to be engaged to participate in the seminar. Even if you’ve just begun considering the possibility of marriage, this is a powerful way to discover whether you should continue in your relationship. This seminar is a lively day of biblical teaching on marriage, exercises that help a couple learn more about each other, and ending with a time of Q&A.
- Join us on a Central Park Historical Highlights & Fall Foliage Walking Tour, Oct 22: Get to know other Redeemerites, in the beauty of nature, as we learn more about Central Park’s complex history, innovative design, and the creative geniuses who brought it to life. We will also walk to enjoy park highlights and fall foliage.
- Have lunch with your neighbors, Oct 30: Join us for a post-service Neighbors Lunch to meet other Redeemer West Siders living around you and meet your pastoral care team! This second one in the series this fall will be for Redeemer West Siders who live on either side of Central Park (80th St to 109th St), as well as RWS congregants from Queens.
- Have lunch with neighbors, Nov 13: Join us for a post-service Neighbors Lunch to meet other Redeemer West Siders living around you and meet your pastoral care team! This third one in the series this fall will be for Redeemer West Siders who live on 79th St and south on the West Side or East Side, in Midtown, Downtown, Brooklyn, Staten Island or Long Island.
- Visit the Gallery | Movement: Solo Exhibit by Christian (Xndrsn) Harbin: Christian (Xndrsn) Harbin’s artworks invite us to explore music and movement in his lines, colors, and composition. Through engaging with the energy and rhythm of his paintings, we are encouraged to consider the movements in our own lives and the internal journeys we take.
- Build your community: Every community has a mission, and every mission has a community behind it. So if you’re interested in building communities for following Jesus together and making an impact in our neighborhoods, please let us know. Community groups have always been a crucial part of Redeemer’s life together, all the more so when communities have been fragmented the last couple years.
- We are hiring: Do you know anyone who’d be a great fit at Redeemer? We are looking to fill several roles on our team before the end of the year. Check them out and spread the word!
- Volunteer at Youth Group on Friday nights: Build involvement with our amazing middle & high schoolers by joining a weekly pizza dinner at W83, leading small group discussions, and being a Christ-like presence in their lives.
- Be a volunteer for Kids Community Group: KCG is an after school program for west side children 1st grade-5th grade. We meet every Wednesday after school to worship as a family, have pizza, and to learn about God’s word. For any questions about registration please contact us at email@example.com.
- Interested in a Mandarin-speaking group?: We’re seeking to start a Mandarin-speaking group within the church. Please contact Joel at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested.
- Pray with the Do For One community: Every month, on two different Wednesdays, join a virtual prayer group with adults who have disabilities. Connect and care for each other while praying through the Gospel of John.
- Love UWS neighbors with All Angels’ Church: Connect more deeply with unhoused and hungry neighbors. Beyond serving with Redeemer West Side congregants every second Sunday, you can still serve All Angels’ Church in more ways.