Jesus makes it clear that we reap what we sow. That’s why we’re hard at work getting ready to begin a new year.
In August we start counting the days until the world comes back to life. The dormancy of summer gives way to a mixture of excitement and anxiety over the beginning of a new church and academic year. The apparent last few lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer mask an increasing number of meetings, requests for ministry help, and synchronizing of calendars. A light event calendar during the summer does not mean there is nothing going on. What happens during the program year is often the result of summer planning.
To play with the agricultural metaphors Jesus uses in the parables we’ve read in church recently, much of our planning is like preparing fields in which you may sow seeds or be sown as seeds.
For example, Christian Education planning teams create a structure within which you can serve as a teacher of children or a leader of youth, sowing seeds of love and nurture among our younger Christians. Clay Crouch and planners of adult education work to provide that good soil of exciting, challenging programming in which you find yourself growing in your faith. Kim Dockery and her team are working to prepare fertile soil for the flourishing of relationships by the establishment of a small group network among us. Sam Holt and our musicians strive to plan music which refreshes our thirsty souls. Layton Getsinger and our outreach team are seeking ways to sow justice and mercy in our community. You get the picture. The goal of planning is to provide avenues for us all to grow into and live as the people God has called us to be.
This is the time of year when we are more intentional in calling one another into deeper ministry here. I hope and pray that our call is compelling and that all our spirits are receptive. As Christians we are all called to live into our baptismal promises, to live lives that are different and that make a difference. And as we pray together, learn together, and work together, we find new strength and faith and a deep joy.
So will you consider teaching or working with youth? Singing in the choir? Committing to small group fellowship? Committing to faithful church attendance? Committing to a ministry of outreach? I hope so. When more of us are involved working to make the reign of God a reality among us and in our community, we are a more vibrant community.
Our program year will begin on September 7, when Bishop Curry will be present. On that day Children’s classes will meet, youth and adults will hear the Bishop during the Sunday School hour, and twenty or more folks will be confirmed or received at 10:30 worship. The traditional Rally Day picnic will follow the service. You’ll want to be present that day. It will be a great way to start the new year, which in many ways is already underway.
—The Rev. Brad Mullis
This article originally appeared in the August 2014 edition of Trinity Topics.