Christ has Risen! He has risen, indeed!
Friends, what a glorious worship service we had together on Easter morning. It was a special opportunity for me to sit at home and enjoy worship with my church family. I enjoyed seeing all the comments pop up on YouTube and I was extremely proud of all of our friends who worked hard to make the worship so special. Of course, as a proud Mama, I can’t help but offer gratitude for my son Stephen, who had a vision with the black and white/color changes reminding us that there is still Easter Light to be seen and felt in this time of darkness.
Truly, Easter is not a day — Resurrection Life is our theology that we trust in and live out every day. That’s why my new sermon series will be called “Resurrection Stories” and will feature stories of resurrection life from our church family. I have some amazing family lined up already to share: Linda Brumagin, Dale Brown . . . who else is willing to share some faith stories? Please email me or leave a comment here and I’ll contact you about filming. We can maintain physical distancing while filming your story, so we won’t be violating any public health guidelines. This week you’ll be hearing from Rev. Dr. Bob Bielenberg in a sort of resurrection. His precious wife Donna shared an important sermon with me called “Does Resurrection Matter?” I used portions of it in the homily at his Memorial Service, and it is truly relevant to our time now. I know many of you will hold his words especially close as you had such great admiration and love for him.
We all have a little more time to be online and more time to watch and listen to things, so I’m including a couple of links here for you:
Click here to read an article about a recent podcast interview I did and you can then click through there to listen to the interview. It’s a little silly and actually pretty fun, and who knows? You may learn something new about me!
Click here to read about how the “Outbreak of Kindness” began and what our intentions were as we started up over a month ago. Special thanks to my daughter Addie, who made the volunteer forms that easily allow people to ask for help and sign up to volunteer help. Since that article, we have trained over 200 volunteers! We are still trying to get more connection between our vulnerable populations and our volunteer force, so click here to see how you can help reach out and find some of those who are living in fear and isolation and need some assistance.
As an FYI: Forum Class has scheduled a Thursday afternoon class. This would be a terrific time for you to join this discussion group and give it a try! You’ll get to see some of your church family through video conferencing, and you’ll be challenged to apply your faith to current issues. I’m thankful to Philip Brinkmann for working to continue this weekly class online.
Other classes you may be interested in are: Lectionary Study at noon on Mondays; Genesis/Exodus Study at noon on Tuesdays. I’ve also emailed some folk about opportunities for morning devotions/coffee time. If any of these things interest you and you would like to enjoy some fellowship until we can fellowship in person, please contact the church office and sign up. You’ll be added to the class lists and receive an invitation through the email.
I am so looking forward to continuing to live our Resurrection Life together. Someday when we can safely gather for worship, you need to expect big, awkward hugs from me!
In Hope and Love,
Our Easter Morning Worship will premiere LIVE at 10 at this link: https://bit.ly/SnowyEasterService
This was a difficult process, to be sure! Many thanks to Stephen Steinbacher, who filmed, edited, produced, and directed this Easter Light Worship.
To James Steinbacher who recorded and mixed all the audio and created a soundtrack for the sermon.
To our wonderful musicians: Traci Maddox, Tony Rosacci, Sarah Lantermans, Lori Ouri, Linda Brumagin, David Maddox, and Matt Nixon.
And of course we all thank our indispensable Office Administrator Jill Miles for endless hours of work through Holy Week and every week.
I woke up extra early this morning. Somehow I-lean, our two-legged cat, snuck into my room and was sleeping on my pillow, purring a lovely lullaby and bestowing me with a wicked bad allergy attack. I got up for cheese (my favorite snack) and saw a bright, nearly full moon in the low western sky. As I sat down to watch the constellations I found Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars lined up in the SE sky right over the ridge of one of the mountains off of my back deck.
The world is unpredictable right now, but some things are so regular. Like clockwork they remind us that the world keeps turning and the solar system is still in its predictable cycle. Our galaxy is full of wonders if we but take time to get to recognize and know it. In these crazy times when it feels like everything is out of order, we can depend on the regularity of our celestial wonders. My dad instilled this in me years ago and since moving to the mountains I have gauged the passing of time with each full moon and each spectacular planet showing off in the clear, cold night skies.
Spiritually it reminds me that our God, who is intimately close to us, is beyond our galaxies and understanding. May each of you find comfort in the galactic mysteries and regularities of a God who herself is full of compassion. Even now, she offers comfort to each of us through the predictability of our planets and stars and their courses through the heavens.