God of life, defeater of death, we worship you because you alone are worthy. Thank you for Jesus, firstborn of the dead, who has shown us the pathway to life everlasting. In these stay at home days, be our shelter. In this time when news of illness and death is all around, restore us to life. In this time of economic anxiety and financial peril, establish our faith in your generous provision. Amen.
I would like to apologize for missing last week’s column. Without getting too much into the gory details, I have a recurrance of a tiny benign tumor. That in itself would be no big deal. The trouble is that it’s in my skull! So it can’t stay there. We decided on radiation treatment, which I had last Thursday morning. When I asked, the doc said I might experience “mild fatigue” afterward. I’m not sure what counts as “severe fatigue” but I now know I wouldn’t want to experience it. I spent the next 24 hours in bed. That threw my schedule off for the week, and I missed my deadline. So, once again, I’m sorry, but I’m glad to say I’m back on my feet and shouldn’t require any more radiation treatments. One and done!
I’m writing this from the downtown Granby Starbucks, which is crowded with people this morning. I’m guessing a few, like me, are here for the power and the wifi, which are down throughout much of the town, including First Congregational Church of Granby, because of the Nor’easter that swept through the region last night. Disruption, whether health-related or weather-related, is my experience right now.
Disruption is familiar territory for me. The big one, of course, was when dad came out as gay and my parents divorced. But even before that moment, much of my childhood experience was moving place to place following dad as he moved from job to job. As an adult, my experience hasn’t been that much different. Ministry has called my family and me to move from place to place following opportunities to be of service. Years ago my oldest daughter commented that the only consistent things in her life have been family and God.
For me, keys to surviving disruption are the following:
Keep it light.
Widen your vision.
See the opportunities.
Focus on the essentials.
Perhaps we’ll have the opportunity to flesh these out further, but for now I leave them with you to think about in relation to our congregational transition.
Transition necessarily involves disruption. Look at Jesus’ example. My reading of Jesus’ death and resurrection is that it was a bit of a disruption–not only for Jesus personally but, as it turns out, for the entire world. Disruption is woven into the fabric of reality. It is also a key component of our faith. Given that realization, how will we respond to disruption as we move into God’s future?