Cycles

Ministry in many ways seems to be a continuing series of cycles.  Opportunities come and go.  Prospects come and go.  Possibilities arise and dissipate.  It can be very frustrating during down cycles, but almost giddy during up cycles.  I try to maintain a somewhat balanced perspective throughout, but being human I’m pretty subject to my own energy levels rising and falling with these ebbs and flows.

Sunday was an up-cycle, for certain.  A great conversation after worship with a parishioner interested in helping to create web-appropriate theological audio content, and who has some experience with audio editing.  This has been a long-time goal of mine, and one that congregational leadership has also recently embraced.  What we lacked was someone with some skills in that area to help make it happen.  I’m excited for the possibilities!

I mentioned off-hand in conversation that I have been interested for some time in the possibility of a radio ministry, and this same parishioner indicated that he had years of experience as a volunteer DJ for the local university radio station, and that he could probably get us a time slot without much difficulty.  More excitement!

Later that evening we had our Sunday evening Happy Hour.  This has become an alternative campus ministry effort for my family and I.  Every Sunday this summer we’ve opened our house to whoever wants to come by.  A recent grad from the local Christian university and a regular attender at our congregation has  latched on to this and invited roommates, friends, and they’ve begun inviting their friends and roommates.  We had a dozen people with us this past Sunday evening, enjoying cheese & crackers, veggies, a hodge-podge of ice creams and other treats, and of course cocktails.

We had a great theological discussion about the difficulty Christians – particularly younger Christians – are having reconciling the Genesis account of creation with the predominant evolutionary and natural selection theories that are taught.  It’s a very challenging issue, and many don’t see much difficulty in holding them both to be more or less correct, simultaneously.  Which generally means that Genesis 1 & 2 are set aside as ‘poetry’ or some other form of general truth rather than specifically accurate in terms of six days and the created uniqueness of each species.

We talked about this for a while before I reiterated that this isn’t really where the Christian dialogue needs to begin or focus.  What we need to always make our starting point is the resurrection, which establishes (or fails to establish) the identity of Jesus as the Son of God, and therefore the one who we should allow to form our Biblical interpretation.  If we take the resurrection seriously, and therefore Jesus’ divinity seriously, then we have to recognize that He takes the Old Testament very seriously – all of it.  He never contradicts it, constantly quotes it and references it.  If He takes all of it seriously, shouldn’t we as well?

It was a great conversation.  Great to have new people to meet and welcome and hopefully have them feel welcomed and at home.  And they really do seem to appreciate having the place and opportunity to have a bit of home and be able to talk about important questions.  That’s our whole goal, and it’s exciting to feel it coming together.

So I’m excited and energized at the moment.  I pray it lasts!

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