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“Jesus spoke to them, ‘Be encouraged! It’s me. Don’t be afraid.’”
Matthew 14:27

This past weekend, we heard these words of Jesus to his disciples several times in our worship service as we read the timeless Bible story of Jesus encouraging the disciples in the midst of a storm at sea.

When Jesus speaks these words, “Be encouraged! It’s me. Don’t be afraid,” it really is a call to us as God’s people to remember and know that God is with us even in the storms of life. It is also a call to be encouragers to others in the midst of life’s storms.

As we continue to live in a season of stormy upheaval on many fronts with challenges that seem to be piling on top of each other, we are searching for ways to safely be in community with one another. We are also seeking guidance for how it is we are supposed to live now.

You may have seen the newest commercial produced by Nike called ‘You Can’t Stop Sport.’ While I do not necessarily turn to Nike for spiritual guidance and while Nike does not intend to give a spiritual message, the commercial has a message for us as individuals and as the church in the midst of this season of adversity.

The commercial reminds us that we are never alone and that is our strength. Through pictures and words, the commercial goes on to say that when we are doubted, we will play as one. When things aren’t fair, we’ll come together for change. No matter how bad it gets, we will always come back stronger. And nothing can stop what we can do together.

I invite you to click this video link and watch the commercial and see if you hear a message for us as God’s people. See if you hear how we might continue to speak and live in such a way that we point to God and God’s love with words and actions that offer the affirmation to, ‘Be encouraged…Don’t be afraid.’