Pastor Cal's
Weekly Epistle

Every week Pastor Cal
writes a weekly column
for the Spirit Page of
the Norwich Bulletin.

He also sends it out to
members and friends of
the church via e-mail.

E-mail him at
calstigers@gmail.com if
you want to be added to
the weekly list.
Central Baptist Church of Westerly
16 Elm Street, Westerly, RI   02891
Phone: (401) 596-4929   

Check out our blog at Central Baptist Life
Jesus Will Set You Free                                        March 5, 2014

Dear friends,

I opened the cupboard door and there it was.  A beautiful little blackbird peeking
out from behind the box of crackers.  Lori had called to say that there was a bird in
the house.  I searched high and low but could not find it.

It wasn't until several hours later that I came face to face with my scared little
friend.  I went to find a treat and when I pulled the box of crackers away,the bird
took flight across the kitchen.

I scooted across the room and opened our sliding glass door so that the little guy
could fly off to freedom.  For the next hour I chased him from one place to another.
Meanwhile the door stood wide open.  I was trying to help the little guy but he
didn't realize it.

Then the unthinkable happened.  He hopped up on top of a kitchen cabinet and fell
down behind it.  Talk about an impossible situation!  I thought he was lost forever.
There was no way I could save him without doing something radical.

That's when the thought hit me that so many of us are like that bird.  We are stuck
in situations that we can't get out of.   When God sends people to help us, we run
from them and end up in an even worse predicament.

The good news is that God invented radical solutions.  Lent begins this week.  It
gives us an opportunity to hear the story of God's love again, a love that went to
the cross to take away our sin and open the door to God's grace and a new life.

We had to unscrew and pull that cabinet away from the wall to set that bird free.  It
was a magical moment when we watched him fly out the back door as my friend
Ray let him go.  I imagine that's the same feeling God gets when one of us finds
our freedom in his son, Jesus.

I'd like to invite you on a Lenten journey.  Pick up a Bible and read the gospel of
Matthew in the days leading up to Easter.  Attend a worship service at a church
near you and listen to the message.  I hope and pray that if you are feeling
trapped, lost or just a bit confused, that you realize how much God loves you and it
will set you free.

God bless! See you in church.  Cal