Breathe, listen and pray

There is a lot going on. Have you noticed? There are people trying to juggle working from home and homeschooling their children. Some people are isolating alongside loved ones, waiting for a COVID test to come back. There are people awaiting test results and getting their life in order before treatments begin. Some are facing the prospect of finding a new place to call home in the midst of a world of instability. There is the very really threat of becoming ill or of perhaps passing an illness onto a loved one. There are people feeling isolated and alone and in some cases, cut off from families and elderly relatives. Just doing ordinary things seem to take more planning and energy than ever before. Sometimes, we even have to remind ourselves what day is and that we are still in the midst of a global pandemic.

Breathe, listen and pray

While at church, there are a lot of things going on too. Worship has resumed in person but the majority of people are watching from home. Ministries are continuing to live out their calling in the world but are doing so using Zoom, emails or telephone calls. There is a lament for a time when we could talk with one another after church, when we could shake hands, give each a hug, when you could get a sense of where people were at, and of how people were doing. There is a need to look at the good things we are doing but also to ask ourselves how we will continue to be church in this new reality for the next few years. How do we minister to a virtual congregation but also to those in the pews and in our immediate neighborhood? Alongside these questions there is a congregational decision before us on Sunday November 15th that is raising concern and tension among many of us.

Breathe, listen and pray

As each of us struggles in this new unfolding reality that is before us, I believe that as a church, as a faith filled and faith full community, we are each trying our best. Do we get it right all the time? No. Are there areas for improvement in how we are to be church? You bet. To serve as a volunteer is no easy task. In many ways it is a vocation and to that calling we each bring our gifts, our leadership styles and our very vulnerabilities to that position.

Breathe, listen and pray

I also believe that when people can come together to listen deeply to another that has a different opinion to one’s own, we are all the better for it. It means that we are healthy enough to hold each other’s pain and opinion no matter how upsetting that might be to hear. By truly listening to one another we can actually come out the other side stronger and more dedicated than before. And so I encourage you to hold yourselves and each other tenderly, especially at this time of multiple transitions and challenges. As we are present to each other and as we walk together into the future, may take the time to breathe, to listen and to seek the wisdom of God as we seek a shared way forward.

Breathe, listen and pray. It is the greatest thing that we can do for each other.

Yours in common purpose,

Rev. Carla

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