July is a time of vacation, fireworks, ice cream, and Ordinary time in the Church year. We the people of Christ seem to be vacationing from all the worries of the world. Some Commissions take breaks, the vestry doesn’t meet, and we have no specific liturgical focus on what God is calling us to do or be. For example, with Advent we wait, at Christmas we celebrate, during Lent, we look at what we have done and what we have left undone. Easter comes with more focus on who we are becoming. July we are just meh.
Yet, this is my time to think about what ministries to focus on over the next year. I have a Letter of Agreement where me, Father Todd, and the Diocese agree on where I’m to serve and agree on goals of what and where ministry can and should occur. This month is a time of reflection for me on what we can re-imagine and what ministry will be for us. My goal this year is to be more intentional about advocacy.
One of the questions that will follow with this is, “Is this my goal or God’s goal?” Discernment is crucial in this process. I sense the Spirit calling me and us to delve deeper into a more justice ministry. Perhaps it has been the repeating Sundays of Baptismal vows, or perhaps it is in the secular injustices across the nation and world. I am sensing we are to be engaged in walking in the way of love to not only pull people out of the river of need but to also find how they are falling into that water. I am for the peace of God, but without justice, there is no peace. So how do we or I go about walking in the Spirit?
I propose we strive to meet every human (no matter dress, manners, smell, the origin of country, etc.) with the love of God in Christ Jesus in our hearts. For me, it starts with saying hello to everyone I see on the street, wherever I may be. Seeing people and meeting them face to face with a hello, is a start. A more interactive way of walking in the Spirit is to pray, the Daily Office is the morning, noon, and evening, with Compline before bedtime. That seems like a lot of prayers, but I assure you that once one of these times becomes a habit, it will not seem so cumbersome. Finally, with even more intentional listening and activity we can learn more about where injustice is in our own lives and the lives of our brothers and sisters in our community. As insurmountable and political as that goal is there are groups within The Episcopal Church (TEC) that have paved the way for us to begin to dig deeper into why so many are falling into the river of need to be saved.
Walk with me, as I walk the spirit. Let’s make an agreement and commitment to God together.