Preparing to be away for three months requires some thinking ahead. Thinking too much can lead to anxiety about “things that need to be done” in the Fall…at church…while I am away. In the midst of preparations, two ideas came to mind. I suppose I should thank God for those two ideas because my muddled mind had allowed anxiety to mount. Thank you God.
Idea #1: First Christian Church of Pomona is building the body of Christ. We are doing this through our organizing work with ICON (Inland Communities Organizing Network). We are doing this through the work begun at our retreat over a year ago through the Hospitality and Technology groups. We do this through Disciples Men, Logos, Bible Study on Sunday morning, a young families group beginning to meet, choir, we send children and youth to camp, worship, and more.
Idea #2: First Christian Church of Pomona continues to extend the mission of the church within and beyond our walls. We just paid for new air conditioning in the emergency shelter of Hope Partners (on our facility). Our work with other institutions through ICON is bringing greater cohesion in our community and beyond. The ministry of the Child Development Center offers safe and significant care and learning for children and families. Our director Virginia Galleano and her staff continue to find ways to build bridges between the families of the Center and the people of the congregation. We financially support the work of our denomination. Our Global Ministries provides a critical presence in many places around the world. One example is the work being done in Ghana by Joyce Larko Steiner, with our help, to rescue boys being trafficked into the fishing industry and to help reunite these boys with their families.
It also occurred to me that the Hospitality and Technology groups are working to live out both these ideas. I am grateful for the significant ministry they are doing to 1. build the body of Christ (to my way of thinking I’d call this building relational culture) and 2. extend the mission of the church.
As I pondered these two ideas and how they are being lived out right now, my anxiety dropped, significantly. I give thanks for the able, adventurous and agile spirit with which you as a congregation allow the Spirit to move among us. I give thanks for the gift of time to pay attention more deeply: to the Spirit’s movement in my own life, to creative impulses I often ignore for the “things to be done” and to study too often done in haste.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you