Happy New Year! I hope you enjoyed a wonderful holiday season with family and friends. Here we are standing together at the threshold of 2018. Like every year, 2017 brought days filled with immense joy and gladness and days filled with hardships and sorrow for us as individuals, for our community, and for the world around us. And yet, the start of a new year can provide such promise and hope, not-yet-told stories of beginnings and newness. Because God is always, always, always doing a new thing.
In the gospel of Mark, at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, he was baptized in the river Jordan. And he received this blessing – You are God’s beloved child with whom God is well pleased. My friends, these words were meant for us too.
As we embark on another year together, I hope we will each remember who we are and whose we are. We are God’s beloved people with whom God is well pleased. And as the prophet Jeremiah reminds us, God has plans for us, plans to prosper us and not harm us, plans to give us hope and a future.
This Saturday, at our Congregational Retreat, we have an opportunity to stand at this threshold together to witness and behold the new thing God is doing in our midst. We have the chance to listen and learn, to hope and heal, and to discover how God is nudging us towards health and new life at PCLT.
Beloveds, I hope you can all attend!
Happy New Year!