From The Pastor's Desk:
How did it get to be September already?! Could it really be time for college football and assessing the Patriots Super Bowl chances? It is not quite time to give up on World Series hopes for the Red Sox. It’s not like the old days, when they adjourned to the cellar for the remainder of the season, once the All-Star Game was over. True Red Sox fans recall: the ’04 Red Sox entered the playoffs as a wild card, made history by roaring back, three games down, to beat the Yankees in the Pennant race. The curse of the Bambino was broken that night.
I can’t tell you how many people I have heard remark on how quickly the summer seems to have passed. I feel it too. Perhaps summer seems so short to us because, in this part of the world, winter is so long. I think our surprise at the passage of time has to do with the way we spend so much time rushing around, that we never fully experience where we are at any given moment.
In his book Slowness, Czech novelist Milan Kundera observed, after a good, enjoyable experience we tend to leave it slowly, savoring and remembering it. When we have a bad experience, we are inclined to rush away to get to the next thing and forget the last. Slowness is for remembering. Rushing is about forgetting, according to Kundera.
The Psalmist wrote, “Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10) The creation narrative in Genesis tells us that the necessity of pausing and reflecting is woven into the very fabric of the universe. Even God rested after six days of creation. I have heard God referred to as the Supreme Being. Have you ever heard of a Supreme Doing? We are human beings, not human doings.
Sunday is the day that we, as Christians, set aside to be. On Sunday we can be together as a congregation, warmed by fellowship, recharged by prayer, and music inspired and informed by the Word of God. On Sunday mornings we offer our presence to God and one another, as we sit still together and come to know God.
Time is sacred and a gift of God. In church, we mark the passing of the seasons of one another’s lives. We mark the seasons of the year, and we mark time with liturgical seasons: Advent, Lent, Eastertide, Christmas, and Epiphany. We are currently in a season some traditions call “Ordinary Time.” Others refer to it as the season “after Pentecost.”
No time is ordinary and every minute presents new gifts, challenges, and opportunities. I look forward to the time we will spend together as we gather again in the sanctuary and all around. I hope your summer was not too quick. I look forward to savoring the year ahead with all of you.
- Yours In Christ, Richard Malmberg