The sun was shining, the birds singing with a light breeze wafting through the outdoor sanctuary called the Welcome Garden on my first Sunday as your summer sabbatical interim pastor. We sang, we prayed, we shared a true and bold story, we broke bread and Jesus Christ was present. Not often do I say this about worship, but it was perfect weather!
Later on Sunday afternoon, we gathered in the Welcome Garden again with Sunday Fellowship. Festivities included singing, bowling, golf-ball-into-milk-crate tossing, and even hula hoop dancing. People of all different abilities gathered in friendship, recreation and prayer. Sweet watermelon juice dripped from every chin as we giggled while seated at tables under shade trees behind the church for our outdoor picnic.
May I lift up before you the miracle of church? We might get too busy to notice. Or it might become so comfortable that we take it for granted. In this one Sunday, I witnessed joyful laughter, frustrated muttering, (It’s hard to share a birthday song, I was told.) healing tears, righteous anger (about injustice), and faithful hope. But most of all, I witnessed Christian service. I love how you serve and volunteer and share and help. I love how you are willing to try something new and welcome everyone who enters your garden sanctuary. I love how you pay attention to the pain of another and reach out to help and to listen. Thank you for being church. Thank you for welcoming me as your interim pastor for this brief summer season. Such faith and hope outweigh all the fear and hatred in our world. This I know is true: love wins.
Rev. Cindy Maybeck