November

Sunday was amazing! It takes a lot to surprise your pastor and send her into such a state of shock over such an outpouring of love.  But on Sunday, you did it.  I had no idea that a plan was being worked in the background to share such joy and appreciation for your pastor on Sunday.  I still get tears in my eyes, especially as I read all the many cards and heartfelt words.  Thank you!  As I said on Sunday morning, (amazed that I could even say something in the midst of tears!) you are a blessing to me and to my family. We could not have asked for a better church or a better move or a better family to be a part of. Thank you for your many words of love and appreciation!!!!

This has been an exciting month of experiencing many firsts for me at Tabernacle – starting a confirmation class of 5 girls, visiting A.W. Shucks, celebrating the HOPE victory lunch with the children, enjoying an eventful Trunk-or-Treat, and preparing our charge conference information! Lots of firsts, and you added one more: celebrating a Pastor Appreciation Sunday! With all of these firsts, I hear a story that must be told.  The story is not new.  The story has been around for hundreds and thousands of years. The story has been told and celebrated in many ways during the centuries. The story forms traditions and rituals. The story creates images and icons.  The story demands to be told and lived. The story started a long time ago but is still being written. The story needs repetition. The story has incredible depth and can offer insight with each reading/telling. The story is God’s story, beginning in Genesis and ending one day with the glory of God’s kingdom being established here on earth.

How do we tell God’s story? It begins with God’s Word and reading our Bible. However, there are other ways we tell God’s story. It appears in our stained-glass windows and our church buildings. It shapes our worship life and the ritual of the church. I have shared with our confirmation class that everything we do in the worship service of the church has purpose and meaning and it is there for us to praise God and tell God’s story.  Each year is crafted to tell all the parts of the story, letting each episode unfold Sunday by Sunday and hopefully, serves to connect our lives with God’s story creating the story of faith.  The story of our faith is not just a paragraph to read out of a book.  Rather, it is to be lived.  That is why we do what we do in worship. We want to do more than read the lesson, we want to do more than have the story read aloud, we want to live it and have it be OUR story.

One cycle through the story is 52 Sundays beginning with the season of Advent and ending with Christ the King Sunday. During the month of November, we will celebrate: All Saint’s Sunday, Thanksgiving Sunday, and Christ the King Sunday.  We will also include special prayers and blessings for all veterans and our shoebox mission project.  These days culminate to celebrate Christ our King! As December begins, we start all over again with a new year, and we remember that our king came to us as a fragile human baby. The season of Advent is a four week period telling us to wait. We must wait for Jesus to be born. We must wait for Jesus to come again. We must wait on God’s time and not our own.  We must wait in the face of a world going too fast and without much patience for waiting. We must tell God’s story and tell the world to wait. Only then, can we celebrate the coming of our Newborn King! All of our time of waiting, worship, hymn singing and preaching lead to the coming of our Newborn King on the holiest of nights and most sacred of evenings. Again, God’s story peaks with the culmination of Advent on Christmas Eve and the beginning of our Christmas celebration.

There is much to the way our individual stories become part of God’s story and we begin to tell the story of our faith.  Don’t rush it! Don’t miss the height of celebration! Don’t miss the chance to hear God’s story and then go into the world living our story of faith.  

 

I share this story with you so that you may experience the many marvelous blessings of our faith.  Much love from a pastor that appreciates you so much!

 

Heather

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