July 2, 2018
In this morning’s Fruit of the Vine, Bethany Lee reminds us that “grace is more than what God does; it’s who God is.” And she challenges us, for this reason, to pay attention to the “sacraments and practices” that open us to experiences of God while also “connecting us to worshipers beyond our community, beyond our era.”
Where have you experienced grace in the last day?
I was with my dad at the hospital yesterday afternoon, talking over his prognosis and how soon he might be able to come home while a passing pack of clouds filled the sky for as far as we could see outside his window. It was a welcome pause, a reminder of God’s presence with us, a moment of grace.
“It’s hard to see God’s grace in painful experiences,” Bethany reminds us. We “rush to silver linings and gratitude to avoid pain.... It’s hard to be willing to sit with my own pain through the long process.”
Bethany asks us to consider: “What if means of grace is just one way to name a moment of awareness oriented in God’s direction? What if God’s grace is ever present, creative enough to flow through any channel. What if, no matter our theology about how God ordains or allows our lives to unfold, we could trust that grace is present in every moment,” that God is present.
And Bethany suggests that we pray, asking God to “open my eyes to your care in every moment.”
P.S. Norval Hadley’s memoir – Going the Extra Mile: Adventures with God in Seventy-Five Countries – arrived late last week, and we’ve already shipped out more than one hundred copies. Have you gotten one? Click on the link above to order your copy!
P.P.S. Seeds of hope – the three-year campaign to fund the ministry of Barclay Press by developing new titles, supporting small churches, and balancing the budget – has a goal of raising $162,000 by December 31, 2020. In order to stay on target, we need to get to $34,859 by August 1, 2018. As of this morning, we have raised $28,565 in gifts and pledges.