e-letter 5/10/19

One of my favorite artists that I follow online is Mari Andrew. She has written an illustrated book and a guided journal, but regularly posts “doodles” or watercolor drawings about life. I enjoy her work because it is relatable — it always feels like she has picked her thoughts right out of my brain.

 

One of the things she does is draw her heart, divided into many different boxes for each month. January’s month had a big slice for “hope for New Year’s resolutions.” August’s heart has a big spot for “very warm sunsets.” For the month of May, the heart had a big slice for “nostalgia.”
 

To be honest, friends, I think my whole heart could be nostalgia in Mari’s formula for May.

 

As college students graduate, my peers announce their new churches, and high school students go to prom, the nostalgia reminds me of so many wonderful memories of those times in my own life. I remember just a year ago when I got to announce my projected appointment to Suntree and to visit Melbourne for the first time. I remember my own college graduation, my own high school prom, my own anxiety about transition and my own fears and joys at each of those steps.

 

The nostalgia also reminds me of the precious place that summer holds in my heart. So many wonderful things happen in churches and in our lives during summer! We have so much ahead for our children, youth, and outreach departments. We have so much fun to look forward to — keep your eyes peeled for information on that.

 

In my summer nostalgia, I remembered that our scripture for this week, Luke 15, was the text for one of the first sermons I ever preached in a “big” church. In my first pastoral internship, I stood up, knees shaking in the pulpit and got to tell about our God who pursues us even when we are the only one lost. How appropriate! This is the very first thing I learned about our God, too — that God would stop at nothing to know me, to know all of the watercolor boxes in my heart, and to be in intimate relationship with me. I am that wandering sheep, I remember. I once was lost, but now I am found.

 

This is the other reminder from this passage: God, the loving parent, seeks, welcomes, and wants ALL people. If we are the one, so is everyone else! Thank goodness! As we celebrate all of the mother-figures in our lives, all of the graduations and transitions, I hope that you’ll remember that as we wander through this life, God seeks and desires us wholeheartedly. We can feel grateful in the nostalgia, and motivated to celebrate, to welcome, to include, and to participate in that reality, too.

 

I’m so grateful for the reminder of all that has come before, and the promise of all that our God seeks to do in our congregation now.

 
I’ll see you Sunday,

Pastor Allee