Summer is a wonderful season. Sunshine and fun. It is a season full of growth. This summer pay attention to our Sunday lessons as we re-encounter Jesus and his disciples. As they are healing, teaching and interacting with people they sometimes face resistance. We too face resistance when things change and grow in our little community. We recently welcomed new members. We have had old members move away. We are still the same loving and welcoming community and yet we are also different. Each new person brings their gifts and personality changing us. When people leave something of them leaves us. We are experiencing new dynamics that challenge how we do things as God’s people and how we experience our faith. We are experiencing both joy and sorrow.
I was recently at Synod Assembly. We have several congregations that closed. Among them was St. Stephen and James Lutheran Church with 166 years of ministry. As a way to remember their ministry the altar pieces and paraments from these congregations we used for our communal worship. They were a reminder that change happens whether we like it or not. Sometimes that change is death. But we have hope in the resurrection. Many of the resources and people from these former congregation are now being used to help other surrounding churches and even helping start a variety of new communities that can hear the Good News of Jesus. Praise the Lord.
In our own church when Joan King had a stroke, we saw people jump at the chance to help and carry the load, so Joan could focus on recovery. It sparked some new life and energy into our food pantry. It created a new dynamic, new energy and maybe even some tension as we continue to figure things out. Joan and Allen are doing much better and are ready get back to this ministry.
I encourage everyone to be patient and loving as we figure out how to manage this change. Learning to take on new tasks, learning to let go so others can participate is necessary for each of us. We are in this together for the sake of sharing Christ’s Love and helping our neighbor. Let’s not forget that.
Another exciting change is Caitlin and I are expecting. We are excited as we prepare for the baby due on Dec, 7th. We are excited to be parents, and this will change our ministry together.
There will be lots challenging things ahead. We each have our own challenges and burdens. Life can get difficult, the challenges taxing, we can even screw up, but Jesus is with us offering us love, hope and forgiveness. Jesus is with us and encouraging us through the good, the bad and the ugly. My prayer for you is that you will embrace the challenges ahead of you. Christ has gone before you. He is preparing the way. As Romans 5:1-5 reminds us
“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.”
Let’s be bold as we face the many moments ahead. Amen!
Posts from various People reflecting on How Christ intersects with daily Life.