Real, Authentic and Connected

Good Morning My Friends!

As I sit here with my coffee this morning there are a couple of quotes running through my mind. The first is one to which I turn often along this journey of faith is found in Psalm 46.

God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble with its tumult.
The LORD of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.

The second quote is from the first theme presentation at Maritime Conference this past weekend. During his opening talk John Pentland said

“The call to be real, authentic churches means being real, connected and
open as individuals and communities.”

In the last couple of weeks there have been a few incidents that have indeed shaken some of our lives and changed the world in which we live.

We have had a number of deaths in our community, several of our brothers and sisters are facing illness that beings great change to life, some are facing flare ups in depression and finding themselves in places of deeper darkness. In particular there are three stories that come to mind for me.

1. A couple of weeks ago now a member of our church, Diane, received word that her grandson was seriously ill. He was non responsive and it was uncertain what was happening. Immediately she reached out to her community of faith and we, in turn, surrounded her with care, support and love. Although we were physically miles away from her grandson we began to pray, drum and send out positive energy into the Universe. She kept us updated daily with what was happening. The medical profession did what they do best and, for those who view it through the eyes of faith, they embodied the healing ministry of the Christ. The Divine presence was real indeed and provided refuge and strength. The church was connected, real and authentic.

2. On Friday night at conference I received word that a member of our church family died suddenly. His granddaughter was on campus and part of the leadership team for Youth Forum. It was devastating new and indeed the earth was shaken and the mountains moved. I watched as her community of faith surrounded her with love, sat with her until her parents arrived, offered hugs, moments of laughter, and were the presence of Divine, a refuge and a strength. This community was real, authentic and connected.

3. Early Saturday morning I received news that Mark, my husband, had been taken by ambulance to the hospital and it was uncertain what had happened. Perhaps a stroke, perhaps a seizure, perhaps??? I got into my car and started home. In the meantime his church family were there seeing that he was tended to and receiving the help he needed. In the days that have followed we have been surrounded by the presence of Divine in real and tangible ways – visits, phone calls, prayers, communion. The community is real, authentic and connected.

As I reflect on this what I share this morning is, at least in my reality, not new. I have been and am surrounded by real, authentic churches and for that I give thanks. Through them the Divine presence is made real and tangible – a very present help in times of trouble.

My prayer is that my reality is also one that is felt by all who find themselves in times of uncertainty, doubt, and fear. Surrounded by the Divine revealed in community there is indeed always help and refuge. It doesn’t necessarily change our circumstances but the path is much easier because we walk it together. There is strength, hope and an enduring love. May it be so for you.

Blessings
Valerie

Reminders of the Week

I am lying low this week and sticking pretty close to home with Mark. However I am reachable by phone so do not hesitate to call and if I am needed in community I am only 50 minutes away. See you all on Sunday!

Sunday June 4th – Annual Seniors Spring Social. 2-4pm

Tuesday June 6th – Regular meeting of Council. If you have committee reports please send to Tracy this week.

Sunday June 11th – A DAY OF CELEBRATION!!! This is a worship you do not want to miss. We will celebrate our children and mark the end of their programming for the year; our youth will share their experience at Maritime Conference and there will be fun and games on the church lawn along with a BBQ.

Sunday June 18th – A time of celebrating our graduates and giving thanks for the father’s in our lives. This will also be Kaleigh’s final day as “Minister of Children and Youth.” She will begin a new adventure in the fall.

Speak Your Mind

*