Refreshed, Revived, Renewed

Whoever you are, wherever you are on your life or spiritual journey, God is with you! Cares for You! Loves You! God in Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit lifts up the weak, empowers the powerless, and renews hope among the weary, lost and hopeless.

This is the hopeful message of who God is and who we are called to be because of who we are and who God is. To use our presence individually and collectively to raise up, empower and bring hope to all who feel lost, alone, left out, downtrodden, or disconnected. This is the point of the message Jesus came to proclaim. It is the purpose of these stories, your story and the story we are urgently called to reclaim, renew and share in our service – together.

Here is one example of why. On Thursday evening I am at city hall waiting outside a conference room. There is young lady near me. We begin polite small talk. I eventually share that I am a minister and have been invited to offer the invocation for the School Committee’s meeting. After an awkward silent pause, she shares that she is “spiritual and not religious.” Like so many others, she says “It is not so much that I left church, it is more like church left me. Things were fine when my life looked picture perfect, but when I faced challenges, I felt shunned, silenced, helpless and alone.”

Listening to her story reminds me of the stories of so many others I have heard over the years, of my own challenging journey and this story from five or six years ago when I lived in Minneapolis.

I step into the crosswalk downtown and spot this mother duck and five or six little ducklings waddling up the sidewalk on the other side. They are heading toward the waterfalls and water features in the small plaza constructed amid the shops and high rises. Mama