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Happy New Year!

I wrote my “short” annual report this past week. In preparation I reviewed 25 of LCM’s past annual reports. I researched congregational presidents, staff changes, and major congregational events. Amazing how God’s grace and mercy has led this congregation through both controversy/trauma and growth/healing.

There is a medical specialty called Palliative Care, which “provides support to those experiencing serious or life-limiting illness.” I picture myself as a Palliative Care staff person, providing “extra level of support” during LCM’s difficult times. I might be described as a bridge to a healthier, more stable future. Please note, I am not your Hospice chaplain. Palliative Care focuses on what matters most. The next phase of my Palliative Care will be leading small discussion groups about LCM’s future.

There is a favorite Epiphany story, entitled GO THAT FAR, that seems to fit our time together at LCM. [A father and son had been dealing with the boy’s fear of the dark, so the father asked his son to fetch a tool from the tool shed. The boy crumbled to the ground in fear. The Father lifted the boy to his feet and placed in his hands a big lantern and he asked the boy, “how far can you see?” “Dad, I can see the driveway.” The father says, “OK, go that far.”

Then the boy reaches the driveway, and the father says, “OK, son, how far can you see?” I can see the edge of the garden. “OK, the father says, go that far.” And when the boy reached the edge of the garden, then he could see the barn, and then the truck parked by the tool shed….finally he fetched the tool and raced back to his father with a big smile.]

The congregational meeting will take place on Sunday, January 28th after worship. Together, I believe, LCM can be led to a set of goals and a new vision, the tool shed. I pray for us to allow the Spirit of the Lord to come upon us and inform us “how far to go.”

I am making a new year’s resolution! Pastor Kirk will stop scrolling social media. A friend has described social media as “joy stealers.” Lord, help me to stop. I wish to learn to embrace simplicity, generosity, and humility.



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