“Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9
As Christians we believe God is with us all of the time. We know God is active in the world and in our lives. God is very near, but it takes practice to see God. It takes practice to see God, because we are so busy and so focused on the noisy demands of our daily lives that we often fail to see God and God’s presence. Our busyness blinds us to God’s presence.
One of the primary goals of my sabbatical is to spend time seeking God’s presence in my daily life. I have come to think of these insights as “God sightings.”
God sightings are sort of like bird watching only instead of keeping an eye out for cardinals, hawks, or sparrows – I keep, my eyes open for God’s presence in my life.
(I know that I have talked a lot about God sightings these past few months. In my defense, I have been thinking about God sightings even more than I have been talking about them.)
Sunday was a particularly busy day for me. It was filled was hustle and bustle and activity. As soon as my feet hit the ground in the morning, I hurried from one task to the next. I spent the early morning double checking things and chatting and making sure that everything was ready. We celebrated and gave thanks for our wonderful Sunday school teachers. I checked in with the three amazing confirmands. I talked to Jack, and visited lots of delightful Lutherans. I greeted our extended family. I gave William a hug and Jack what I hoped was an encouraging smile before getting ready to lead worship with my mind abuzz with last minute details. Then I spent the first part of the worship service hoping I wouldn’t ugly cry during Jack, Lilly, and Kayleigh’s confirmation, and second half hoping that the caterer would arrive on time.
I was definitely in “pastor” and “mom” mode and not in worshipper mode on Sunday morning, but that all changed at the end of the worship service when my sisters and brothers in Christ slowed me way down with a truly beautiful song – sung with love and kindness and such grace. A song that was and is a blessing.
As I stood there with Jason, Jack, and a wiggling, mischievous William, I felt so loved, so blessed, so thankful, and I saw God’s powerful presence in my life. You took my breath away!
I didn’t have a camera to snap a picture for the blog, but I carry a picture of all of you in my heart. My Saint Stephen family was my first sabbatical God sighting, and I give our Lord thanks for all of my sisters and brothers in Christ. I so love being your pastor! You are an amazing gift from God.
In Christ –