A note from the field...
"Then he said to his disciples, 'The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few.'" --Matthew 9: 37
In the final weeks of summer, I'm taking time to reflect on what has happened in the last few months...and it's a lot. A LOT has happened. We've learned a lot about our community--both our church and our neighborhood--we have made big investments in new staff and new resources; I have met more people, heard more stories; there have been weddings and funerals, baptisms and graduations, and of course...our glorious new entryway to the sanctuary is almost complete. In the midst of all that there have been vacations, honeymoons, reunions...all of it for the sake of learning how to be God's People in this place: How to Love God, ourselves, our neighbors, our world.
Last Friday I had the opportunity to sit down with Jennifer, our new Church Coordinator, and Traci, our new Director of Youth and Family Ministries, and in the span of a few minutes we were able to generate a substantial list of things we see beloved people wrestling with and suffering from every day:
Unemployment, underemployment, employed but not paid enough to make ends meet, employed and paid well to do work that is without meaning and purpose; too much to do and not enough time to do it; instilling children with strong morals; caring for an elderly parent; caring for an ill partner; unhealthy diets; addiction; loss of connection with family, friends, wider community; expensive child care; a lack of arts education in public schools; isolation.....this is just the stuff I can remember.
And it didn't take us much longer to brain storm ideas for how our church community could potentially be of service to people in all of these areas and more. There is a great need in our community for the kind of healing and nourishing that only God's Agape Love can provide. Uniting together to serve those in need is sometimes referred to as "bringing in the harvest." Through our reflections, our discernment, our choices, our actions, our commitments we harvest God's Agape Love and bring it to the people who are most in need of it...and what Jesus said 2,000 years ago remains just as true today...there is plenty to do, plenty of Love to go around...and never quite enough laborers in the field.
As autumn quickly approaches...my mind is on the harvest. The seeds of Love have been planted...the crop has been growing for years and years...this summer we have tended and watered with even more care and conviction...and the harvest is fast approaching.
I hope that this week, and in the weeks ahead, you will join us out in the field and help us to bring this Agape Harvest to God's blessed world.
Peace and Grace upon us all,