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From the Pastor - July 2019

07.01.19 | by Vivian McCarthy

    To be honest, I had a very hard time finding a topic for this month’s newsletter, so I took a page from John Wesley: I opened a book to find some inspiration. At first I just let it fall open, but I didn’t want to write about Easter. Then I turned to the page for today – June 20 – the day I absolutely HAD to finish a newsletter piece. The book I selected is Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals by Shane Claiborne, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove and Enuma Okoro.
    It’s a devotional guide that speaks to me.

    This is what I found:

    John Chrysostom, a fourth-century preacher and bishop of Constantinople, said, “Our spirit should be quick to reach out toward God, not only when it is engaged in meditation; at other times also, when it is carrying out its duties, caring for the needy, performing works of charity, or giving generously in the service of others. Our spirit should long for God and call Him to mind, so that these works may be seasoned with the salt of God’s love, and so make a palatable offering to the Lord of the

    ... seasoned with the salt of God’s love, and so make a palatable offering to the Lord of the universe. 

    There are days when I forget to invite God into the ministry that God called me to! I get tired and just want to get through the day. People ask outrageous things or say things that are hypercritical or just
    thoughtless. And I confess that I don’t always “long for God and call him to mind” in those moments. In my own humanness, I forget the most important ingredient of all. 

    There are so many times in our life together when I see people involved in ministry. Many, if not most, times the ministry is truly “seasoned with the salt of God’s love.” 

    I invite us all into the following prayer from Claiborne’s book that comes out of Chrysostom’s quote – so that our ministry together is always a palatable offering to God: 

    Lord, we know that You will come again in glory to raise the living and the dead. Resurrect us now from the death of comfort, complacency, sloth, and shallowness that we might witness to Your love in life and death. Amen

    Blessings on you!