Lord, listen to your children praying

Sometimes, we it seems live our days between songs and sorrows. Early in this summer season we already have so many concerns, anxieties and worries. Transitions. Turmoil. What comes to mind are the lyrics of the song, Lord, Listen to Your Children Praying. Simple words, but they touch my heart every time I hear it.

Lord,lListen to your children praying,
Lord, send your spirit in this place….
Lord, listen to your children praying…
Send us love, send us power, send us grace.

https://video.search.yahoo.com/search/video?fr=yfp-t&ei=UTF-8&p=lord+listen+to+your+children+praying+alejandrio#id=1&vid=4818db3971bc2a65826423463e07f9a7&action=click

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem, worship audio 6/26:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1LEXw_Gcu8Hg9__LRnX5PfT2ri4PrqBEq/view?usp=sharing

Wind & Spirit

There are many expressions that use the word ‘wind’: the wind at our back, blowin’ in the wind, the wind in our sails, gone with the wind, go with the wind, four sheets to the wind, in the wind, the wind of change, an ill wind, whistle in the wind – take your pick. The American Free Dictionary includes 104 such phrases. I only mention wind today because the wind has been blowing – sometimes fiercely – the past two days. In our locale alone, flying a kite has only torn the kite to shreds, canoeing/kayaking/boating on some bodies of water have been limited or denied, garden plants and flowers have grown weary of trying to stand straight and tall.

I love the wind this time of year. I love to listen to it. I love to feel it. I imagine parts of God’s Creation are dancing in the wind, like the flowers and trees, bending and twisting to whatever speed/strength the wind offers. I used to love to see the wind act out on a calm lake, causing ripples to immensely increase; or assertively cross the ocean water, causing the water spray along the shoreline to go higher and higher.

I love the wind such as these past two days, especially as we just celebrated Pentecost a short time ago, reminding us still, that God’s Spirit is active and all around us. That we will continue to be encouraged and strengthened by God’s Spirit, as long as we are open to its presence. Surround me, Mighty Wind! Surround me, Holy Spirit!

Wisdom

I woke up long before dawn this morning with some of the lyrics of Paul McCartney’s song, “Let It Be” dancing in my head. Why? I have no real reason. If I would venture to guess, it may be because the word broken-hearted has bled through nearly every part of our mind and soul lately. Whether in personal stories or news stories or in memories. The lyrics that called me to wake up before the sun:

And when the broken-hearted people, Living in the world agree
There will be an answer, Let it be
For though they may be parted , there is still a chance that they will see
There will be an answer, Let it be

There is hope for the broken-hearted in these words. As Paul goes on to say, whisper words of wisdom, Let it be.

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem worship audio for June 12 –

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ayx_mmkfVnfRKgoclcWPWexkGzCSfSOh/view?usp=sharing

Breath of Life

On this beautiful Sabbath that God created, we collectively say, “Come, Holy Spirit, Come! Advocate, Encourager, Breath of Life…enfold us in our struggles, in our griefs, and in our courage….embrace us through the stories of pain we share, through the horizons of hope that remain unseen, and the landscapes that are scattered shards of brokenness stretched across fields and valleys. Please, Holy Spirit, Breath of Life, infuse us, revive us refresh us, with your power to be able to journey with one another in love, in peace, and in hope.

I was humbled this morning to share communion with congregations from both St. Thomas and Trinity United Church of Christ (in person and virtually) AND to confirm six youth. How awesome is God’s grace and mercy!

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem, worship audio 6/5 – .

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HWnx64XyoC-p1gLNLyuBhgtNo7ZFaRBa/view?usp=sharing

There is a breeze…

…thankfully, because this Sabbath is hot and humid. Where will you find cool relief? A swimming pool? Under the shade of an elm tree? Sipping on a cold glass of iced tea in an air conditioned space? Snoozing in a hammock ties between two trees? A dish of ice cream (a cherry, please)? No matter what you do or where you go to escape the heat, enjoy!

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem worship audio May 22 –

..https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ZRF5fAMxj7WXDCzkpzpiuJXhDHwYY_Il/view?usp=sharing 

Find joy

The gift of a beautiful spring day beckons us to find joy within it. Ride a bike, go for a walk, hike with a friend, sit on the patio and ‘just be’. Breathe in everything good; exhale all that troubles you. Let the gentle breeze sweep your worries to the furthest corner of your mind; let the warmth of the sun bring forth your hopes and dreams for the day.

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem May 15 worship audio =

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1hB2-Pttb96PPLX6rVfG503nTtWVfj7Nl/view?usp=sharing

Shepherding

Today is Mother’s Day and also Good Shepherd Sunday. I was reflecting on who served as shepherds for me in my life? Who cared for me and supported me; who showed me unconditional love? For me, it was my grandmother, Mary. What about you? You were your shepherds? Or…consider to whom you may have served as a shepherd…someone you may have guided or advised; extended a kindness; embraced with wisdom and care.

Such a beautiful day tp ponder these things! Blessings to mothers, in whatever way that happens for you.

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem worship audio May 8 –

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1tcsaZbo0WiXhcc0nK1XNERqosmOMy1fr/view?usp=sharing

Oh, the possibilities!

There is something about the first day of a brand new month! It is exciting! It’s like opening to the first blank page in a notebook – climbing a mountain for the first time and reaching the top; the view is breathtaking! A first view, page or day – paint your own picture! Create your own landscape! The possibilities are endless!

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem worship audio May 1 –

https://drive.google.com/file/d/11hCCVMSM1_6DSQWNRWA9LvhWyg0BNNFy/view?usp=sharing