There is so much hope and energy surrounding a new September. Children and youth returning to school in a new grade, college freshmen shaking off the shackles of adult oversight, beleaguered parents placing kids on the bus with feigned regret and then rushing off to celebrate their emancipation over coffee with their peers. There is a freshness and newness to September, as we begin our shift back from shorts to slacks, flip flops to flats, vacation to vocation and backyards to schoolyards.
Rally Weekend, September 8 and 9, our kids and guides return to Sunday School; then on Wednesday the 12th our Confirmands and guides gather for the first time this fall. Along with them, numerous other groups and studies reignite or launch with renewed spirits. Our worship theme this year is “All In God’s Grace.” Joyfully, we will worship, study and pray, seeking greater clarity and depth to our relationships with Jesus and each other. We will explore what it means to be “all in” in our discipleship and what it means to proclaim “all in” in our diverse and often exclusionary world. Confidently, we will explore the treasures that are ours in Christ, in relationships, in our community and in our world. On Tuesday nights in CrossPaths, I will lead a Bible study that was inspired by our national Bishop’s four emphases “We are Church” “We are Lutheran” “We are Church Together” and “We are Church for the Sake of the World”. I hope you will join me as we explore our identity as Lutheran followers of Jesus in this place.
What a treasure we have been given through God’s ongoing creation of our world and life, through Jesus’ transformation of the redundant life into the abundant life, and through the Blessed Spirit’s renewal of daily life. What a blessing, indeed, and what an amazing journey of discovery God has mapped out for our hearts to follow.
Come this fall to join us as we map our way to a deeper relationship with God, seeking clues for the direction God would have us go and keeping our eyes on the prize that is God’s love and favor. Joy, hope and purpose will surely abound!