“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” – Ecclesiastes 3:1
“Train children in the right way, and when old, they will not stray.” – Proverbs 22:6
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” – Hebrews 11:1
“But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity.” – 2 Peter 3:18
These are some of the verses that have been swirling around in my head during this week. I am writing this article in the middle of August, when so many are sharing pictures of children going to school. I am particularly fond of those collections of pictures which show the changes from one year to the next. Similar to so many others, my family is preparing for a new school year. This year is different, as Adam is embarking on his first year of college. So many clichés come to mind, such as “time flies,” or “where did the time go?” The life of faith is full of moments, some bigger or smaller than others, but always lived out amidst the presence of the Holy Spirit. Preparing for a change is important, but so much of living in this world is in those in-between moments, not really waiting for something to happen but dealing with the expectations and realities that life throws our way.
During these past few months I have often been asked, “Are you ready for Adam to go to college?” Transitions and changes are part of life whether we are ready for them or not. There are even times when our inability to accept these changes hinders our growth or understanding. Sometimes there are seemingly so many beginnings and endings that you wish God would slow down a little, yet the mystery and wonder of God remains. Giving thanks for what has been and looking forward to what will be is possible in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In Christ we live, and move, and have our being. I am ready for my son to go to college, and I am going to lean on God in Christ to live into that new reality in my life.
There are articles in this month’s newsletter highlighting the actions of the recent ELCA Churchwide Assembly in Milwaukee. [See page 10.] Also included are articles from our Presiding Bishop Eaton [See page 12.] and our Synod Bishop Abraham Allende [See page 11.] concerning the vote towards becoming a “sanctuary” denomination. If you have any questions concerning any of the actions taken at the Assembly feel free to talk to me anytime.
Living in God’s amazing grace,
Pastor Matthew Groenke