I’m excited that I get to spend two more months with you – praising God, studying scripture, talking about important issues of the day, praying for the needy in our community and world, caring for one another in times of joy and sorrow. Being church. We are scheduling some special events in August and September that you’ll hear more about soon.
But first, I wanted to share with you some thoughts about Grace and your future. I know that it can seem like you are living in an in-between time as you wait for your redevelopment pastor. I believe that, theologically speaking, we are living in an in-between time every day:
What that means is that as Grace, and as followers of Christ, we will always be searching and seeking, even as we rest secure in God’s everlasting care for us.
Indeed, my critique of church in the United States since the 1950s is that we got complacent and acted as if the church had arrived, like there was no more work to be done. We thought that programs and church suppers were enough when we needed transformation and deeper relationship with Christ. We needed to be engaged in the significant issues that were affecting people’s lives and bring the gospel to bear on them. Most mainline churches lost some opportunities in those decades.
Our task is to love the world now, and to do so as people who know that we are loved and changed by God and want to share that good news with others in our words and actions. That is the journey I am glad to be on with you; it is the journey that your redevelopment pastor will walk with you. It is our calling in whatever stage we find ourselves in personally and as a church.
I won’t be with you this Sunday. I’ll be at a family wedding in Door County, Wisconsin, one that I was going to skip when it was my second to last Sunday with Grace. When my time got extended a bit, I knew that it was important for me to share the joy of my first niece to get married. I admit that I also won’t mind the cooler weather for a few days
I’ll hold you in prayer while I am gone and invite you to do the same for me. The Lord be with you.
Grace and peace,
A reminder and invitation:
I am at Morning Call (corner of City Park Ave and Canal) each Tuesday morning from 8-10am and at Nolabeans (corner of Harrison and Vicksburg) each Wednesday from 12-2pm. My time away will NOT affect any of those times. Hope to see you there.