Dearly Beloved,

How are you enjoying our slightly shifted order of service this Epiphany? I have loved getting to sing several songs/hymns together as we center ourselves and open our hearts. How has that been for you? Nikki and I would value your feedback about this in particular as we consider whether to do that again another season.

This last Sunday was such a gift for me in reminding me of the wisdom of others within our congregation. Heather Tribett's testimony moved me to tears and inspires me to reflect deeply on how (or even whether) I have experienced God's love, my belovedness, in the periods of my life that have been most trying, most difficult. I felt like a disciple sitting at her feet as she shared. I was reminded in the best way possible that we do indeed celebrate a ministry of all believers and that her witness was a ministry to our whole congregation. Thank you again, Heather!

It was fun to share conversation with Rev. Dr. Sarah Linn, moderator of the Rocky Mountain Conference (UCC) and pastor of Creede Community Church. It's the first time I've entered into the sermonic moment without a manuscript, so it took some trust on my part -- trust in the Holy Spirit's presence and trust in our congregation to hold that space even if it didn't go exactly how I intended.

It's been beautiful for me to see in myself and celebrate the ways in which I am deepening in my practice of trust. And that is in no small way thanks to all of you and our congregation. I am discovering a profound sense of rest, spaciousness and liberation in being able to practice trust more. Or as one of you said to me after service on Sunday, to practice surrender. 

What weighs on you? In what ways can you surrender those burdens, those concerns, those fears to the divine one? In what ways can you trust yourself to be okay whatever comes? What might it look like to trust the people around you in different ways? I'd love to hear your reflections.

This coming Sunday, we will celebrate those in our congregation who are stepping down or back from leadership positions and honor those who are stepping up or forward into leadership. We are blessed by so many people who are engaged and willing to say yes. And I hope we can continue to grow and shift so that the gifts of an even broader base of leadership can step forward, so that we might embrace a breadth of wisdom, experience and perspective well beyond what we do now. It is part of my prayer for us as we continue to live ever more deeply into who God calls us to be.

With love and gratitude,

p.s. Keep reading 1 Corinthians! This Sunday we'll hear chapter 3 verses 1 through 9, 16 and 17.