Well, here we are again. 33 months ago, I came to you, leaving my family behind in Cullowhee, and now I am here with you still as they go off to Berlin for four months. Then, we tried to get to know one another in the rush towards Christmas. Now, we are in the midst of asking, how can each of us share the ministry of this church in the world around us? For me, it will be a time of reflection and a time of action, as I embark on a spiritual practice of reading through the Bible and commit myself to meeting regularly with people outside our church family, serving with IMPACT and checking in on the Ankeny Service Center, joining delegations to AMOS gatherings, and supporting our members in our shared attempts to model “serving beyond,” and rethinking how we do church, as we all understand the need to make fundamental changes but struggle to hear God’s voice calling us into what will be new. Will you join me on this journey? Will you commit to imagining, in this fall, what might be, and talking with our whole church family about how we are to welcome the next person coming in the door? I’d love to meet with everyone over the next four months and share a cup of coffee, a meal, or just a conversation about where we are going.
We can start at the Hog Roast. As you meet new people and old people, let’s ask them where Ankeny needs service. What are people afraid to talk about? Ashamed? Denying? How can we grapple with those things, inviting God’s presence and the Holy Spirit’s feeding fire?