June 17, 2020
It is a beautiful hot day outside as I sit down to write. I feel weary despite the sunshine and blue sky. I am tired of the pandemic that still keeps many of us at home. I am tired of the news of racism and violence. I am tired of the uncertainty as we look ahead. When will we get to meet again in person? What will schools look like in the autumn? What will the long-term fallout of so much unemployment be? When can we get back to normal? The weariness feels like a weight, slowing me down and making me simply want to check out. But the way through weariness is not escape -- it is rest, renewal and re-energizing. It is looking for the things in the world around that can sustain us during this time.
And so I am beyond thankful for our summer theme of "Through the Eyes of a Child." This last week, I have been holding Bernie's reflection on curiosity and trying to practice being curious about EVERYTHING! And as I prepare for Sunday, I've been reflecting on the theme of hope. We'll be reading Genesis 18: 1-14 and hearing about Sarah's hope and her laughter. Even in her old age, Sarah is promised a son "in due season" (verses 10 and 14). One of our newer members, Tammy Sharmer, will share with us her reflections on hope.
Here are a few of the places that I see hope:
The community hall that is strewn with cardboard and old fluorescent light tubes. Bernie Depperschmidt, the Chair of our Trustees, has taken the lead in working with a company that is helping us receive grants and rebates to replace ALL of our lights with LED lights at no cost to ourselves apart from the many hours that Bernie is so generously donating to help make this happen.
The Tuesday morning virtual Lectio Divina gatherings. And the Wednesday evening "Real Talk" about our own experiences of witnessing racism and our confessions of our own racism and bias (much of it somewhere hidden below the surface).
The gift of leaders who are taking the lead on putting together Adult Education opportunities around faith, aging, spirituality, and racial justice.
The photographs of father figures that you have been sending me for Sunday's slide show prayer for our fathers and father figures.
Our children and their questions, their love and their willingness to lead us into worship during our summer season.
The hard conversations that hold room for hurt and anger, selfishness and mistakes, apologies and forgiveness and through which we can build trust and strengthen relationship, even deepen in love.
What gives you hope? What changes have you seen during this time of quarantine and physical separation that you hope will continue? What changes do you still hope to see happen in our community and world? What might you be invited to wait for to happen "in due season"?
I look forward to joining you in virtual worship on Sunday. And in the meantime, may curiosity and hope be yours!
Blessings and peace,