Dear friends in Christ,
Summer time… the Church calls this Ordinary Time.You know, ordinary doesn’t seem so ordinary when you see God in the ordinary.
How will you spend this summer of ordinary time? For some people, summer is a busy time. For others it’s a time to slow down and recharge the batteries. I suppose I am still on the school schedule especially now that I also serve The Howe School. When I was a teacher I appreciated the time off. I still do. My clock winds down in summer. I will try to recharge my batteries. I will spend the time reading, writing, playing guitar, carving, and turning. I will reflect on our past year together at St. John of the Cross and dream, wonder, and explore ways to renew our life of ministry together.
During this Ordinary Time stop, look, but also listen. Listen to and reflect on what Jesus asks of You. Where does He call you to go? As part of our baptismal covenant we are called to be ministers in His Name. What is your ministry? What are your spiritual gifts? Where do you see yourself in the life of St. John of the Cross? You are an essential part of the church. Where you are, young or not so young, new member or longstanding member – you are essential to life and mission of this parish.
Each of us has been given gifts. How will you use your gifts in this parish this fall? Lead a Bible or a book study, sing in the choir, serve on the Altar Guild, serve as a Eucharistic Minister, an acolyte, usher or Lector. These are just a few of the many opportunities to serve your parish. I look forward to seeing where the Lord will take us.
There is a collect in Morning Prayer that touched my heart for this ordinary of times. It is the collect for the Renewal of Life. It reads: O God, the King eternal, who divides the day from the night and turns the shadow of death into the morning: Drive far from us all wrong desires, incline our hearts to keep Your law, and guide our feet into the way of peace; that, having done Your will with cheerfulness while it was day, we may, when night comes, rejoice to give You thanks; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
What struck me were the words: having done Your will with cheerfulness. It caused me to take stock. Do I always do His will with cheerfulness? There is such a joy that comes with serving our Lord, Jesus. I pray that His joy is always evident. Now as we enter into the season of Ordinary Time may we too experience the renewal of life in Jesus Christ. May we share His joy with others as we do His will with cheerfulness.
With my deepest gratitude for all that you do and all that you are, I am…
Yours in Christ