A few summers ago I was a counselor at a Lutheran Bible camp in Montana. We were tenting in the wilderness and one morning before dawn, I was awakened by an unpleasant noise. An obnoxious reverberation, almost deafening, forced my eyes wide open. Was it a bear outside of my tent? No, it was Mike, my tent mate. Now I was fully awake! I emerged from the warm refuge of our tent, thanks to Mike, and into the cool morning of late June, I felt particularly refreshed. The sun had not yet risen and the mist still hovered over the nearby river. This was a delicate scene, which was soon broken by the sun’s rays.
Although I was roused at an unintended time, I was glad to be greeted by the breeze, the flowing river, a view of these peaks, and to be embraced by God’s creation on that chilly morning. A rude awakening soon led to a moment of grace and gratitude.
We may not always be certain, but God’s presence is always with us. Going around life’s corners may be tricky and we may feel unsure of what’s to come. Despite our fear, we may be reassured that God is always active, creating new things in our life, and taking us to new places. God is there to ensure that we are met with new challenges, new relationships, and new ways of seeing Christ in the world.
Each week, we come together to hear and to learn more about where God is active in our lives. Especially for me as the new Vicar, I will often need your thoughts and prayers as I grow into a pastor.
God’s presence will guide us to learn new things about one another, how we live out our faith, and, most certainly, in worship. All of your faces and names are new for me, as well as your stories. In light of all this newness, I am eagerly anticipating getting to know each and every one of you.
Whether we plan for it or not, God is with us each and every day. From day to day and from week to week, God will reveal new things in this sacred space we call Saint Paul Lutheran Church. Thanks be to God.