I got a nice surprise that brought me joy last night when I checked my mailbox!

Dear Congregation,

Greetings! As we approach the last Sunday in July, I hope and pray that all is well with you. I find myself wishing that time would go faster so we’d be closer to the end of 2020 when a vaccine for Covid-19 will, hopefully, have become available. Then I remember my mother’s words, “Don’t wish your life away”, and so try not to do that.

Instead, I challenge myself to look for some joy, hope, and beauty in the small and ordinary of each day that I experience with my senses.—the sight of a squirrel running across the electrical wires outside my bedroom window, the taste of a favorite sandwich, the sound of sweet birdsong, the feel of the cool pool water  as I swim backstroke laps, the smell of lasagna baking. We don’t want to let this pandemic rob us of being fully present in the good things of the now! I invite you join me doing the same.

I got a nice surprise that brought me joy last night when I checked my mailbox! In it I found the gift of the booklet “Emerge: Blessings & Rituals for Unsheltering” by the STILLSPEAKING WRITERS’ GROUP. The letter from The Rev. Traci Blackmon and other officers of the UCC that accompanied the booklet said that each active minister of the UCC was receiving this gift honoring the sacredness of our work.  It felt really good to think that those who lead our denomination reached out in this way to all of us who are trying our best, in very challenging circumstances, “to share the message of the all-encompassing love of Jesus”. It also was good to be reminded that the time will come when we will emerge from this pandemic!

And so I, in turn, share this blessing/poem from that booklet with you, as we look toward that joyful time.  Hang in there!

In Christ’s love,

Pastor Candy

                          

“Blessing for Returning to Joyous Spaces”

by Marchae Grair

Bless the dance floors and the…

coffee shops,

patios, karaoke stages,

arenas,

bowling alleys,

barbershops and salons,

gyms,

bars and wineries,

arcades,

theaters,

malls and markets,

art galleries,

amusement parks,

and, and, and…

 

Bless our grieving hearts

as we mourn the places we’ve loved

 that won’t reopen.

 

Bless our restless hearts

as we resist the temptation

to gather before it’s safe.

 

 Bless our restless hearts

as we resist the temptation

to gather before it’s safe.

 

Bless our fearful hearts

as service workers among us

provide joy at the risk of exposure.

 

Bless our grateful hearts

as we cling to the sounds and smells,

the colors and textures,

and the sacred memories

of the places we love

as we gather again.

 

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