“. . . I will watch for you; for you, O God are my fortress …” (Psalm 59:9)
We’re in a period of global disruption. Between the pandemic, the senseless killing of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers, and the subsequent social unrest, life has changed dramatically. While we know our current circumstances can’t last forever, it’s hard to be sure what will emerge on the other side.
Like many before us, we are called to watch for what God is doing in the midst of this disruption, to discover the new life God is bringing forth and how we are being called to help cultivate it.
To be sure, this is not a passive watching; it’s active, paying careful attention to the movement of the Holy Spirit and being engaged in the work of discernment, anti-racism, and holding one another accountable. We watch for God, then follow God’s lead, working for justice and peace.
The psalmist notes that we can watch for God, and God will show up, for God is faithful. God is our fortress, and “in his steadfast love will meet [us]” (Psalm 59:10).
This issue of Story reflects some of the ways our extended Luther Seminary family is watching and working. In the pages that follow, discover our alumni who are innovating in response to the coronavirus crisis (So what is church? The COVID-19 pandemic may revolutionize how congregations worship); how churches of immigrants and refugees, communities that are among those hardest hit by the pandemic and racial unrest, are flourishing (‘Friendship and partnership’: Collaboration with immigrants fuels the church); and how one of the most popular courses in the seminary’s history leaves a legacy of hope for the future (Becoming part of the biblical story: 25 years of one of Luther Seminary’s most-loved courses).
In my own impatience for answers and clarity, I find comfort in the promise that God meets us in our places of deepest struggle. There is no doubt that’s what our community is discovering now, and it’s what I hope and pray you are also seeing in your own lives and ministries.
Robin J. Steinke