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Pastor's Monthly Newsletter Message

March 2009

What would you do?


     “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” The question has been running around in my mind.  “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”  It’s a question that Haw notices on the wall in the provocative little book by Spencer Johnson, Who Moved My Cheese.  It is a daring question.  It is a question that places on the balancing scale our fears and our dreams.  It is a question that begs us to consider the depth of our bravery and perhaps even our willingness to step out and trust.  I found this quote by Mary Manin Morrissey: “You block your dream when you allow your fear to grow bigger than your faith.”


     Did you ever consider how much fear blocks our way forward?  Recently, a worker for a local mission agency shared the dream of doing a Presbytery-wide food drive.  Even though we had a successful Fill the Truck Project in the past, I confess that fear lurked in the dark corners.  Could we do it again?  Could we inspire the Presbytery to take up the challenge?  Happily, my fears did not win the struggle and I found myself in the midst of this important project.  Not surprisingly, however, fear has been present throughout the planning and the continuation of this project.  Trust and faith have been constantly tested by fear.  What helps trust and faith along?   Nothing less than the encouragement and support of others!  Our Hunger Action Team has once again stepped up to the challenge with total faith in the ability and support of this congregation.  There will be a great deal of information and ideas of how to help gather food coming in the weeks ahead, but I couldn’t help but wonder, what if...what if fear had won the day?  How often do we let fear keep us from trying?  How often do we let fear keep us from stepping forward?


     As we begin to turn our faces toward the cross during Lent and join Jesus on his journey, perhaps we should ponder the fear that dwells within us.  I met a pastor recently who told me of his practice of sitting down with newly retired folks after a few months of retirement and asking them the question, “If you could do anything for God, what would it be?”  Then he offers them work space in the church and support to make it happen.  What if this was not just a question for those who have retired, but for all of us?  Maybe some of our Lenten discipline should involve questioning what God is calling us to do right now.  Consider combining the two questions and struggling with the one question: What would you do if you weren’t afraid and could do anything for God?  It may be a question that takes a lifetime to answer, but I can’t help but think that wrestling with it will challenge each of us to become more radically brave.  I can’t help but think that wrestling with the question will also encourage us to step forward in faith.  I can’t help but think that God would use each of us in amazing ways if we were just daring enough to struggle with the question.  So, what would you do?  What will you do?  What is God calling you to do?  Let us wonder and pray on our own and together as we journey along the Lenten path.


-Rev. Laurie