It’s tough to write an article for January when I’m listening to the sounds of Christmas music, the chatter of folks out in the office, and the drone of the copier for the next few hours printing Christmas eve worship bulletins… As excited as I am for the next few days and some days of rest afterwards, I have to admit I do get motivated for what comes next as we enter in to 2022! It’s been nearly 4 years since I came to St. Paul’s and I’ve gotten to know so many of you, learned the history of the church, gotten to know the community, and am excited to ask the question of you and of God, “What’s next?” As in, who is God calling us to be in the midst of the greater Hanover area. More and more people, and more and more churches, are moving into the area. Just because we’ve been here the longest doesn’t mean people know who we are – and honestly it doesn’t mean we know who we are. 2022 is the year to answer the questions, “Who are we, and what is God calling St. Paul’s to be in our community?”
In the church world, we call this a visioning process. I’ve led them in two previous congregations and they always offer the chance to ask great questions, dream about who we are and who we are excited to be, and put some tangible plans and strategies in place to lead and direct our ministry for the next 5-10 years. Now, if this doesn’t excite you, that’s fine – not everyone is energized by the process. But, please do get involved when the time comes to answer questions and share your feedback. God puts on our hearts all sorts of passions, and you never know when what he is calling you to do might be something this congregation needs to be involved in as well.
Again, some of you get excited about this, some of you want nothing to do with it. You both will get to participate accordingly. Now is the time to ask God to point us in the right direction, to set us on the best path so that we can serve our communities best. We are called to love God, to love others, and to serve God’s world, but we need some more details about how St. Paul’s is uniquely gifted to tell the people we encounter about Jesus and invite them into a community and into a relationship with Jesus that changes lives, families, and neighborhoods. I’m looking forward to what God uncovers in our midst and how he calls us to move forward.
2022 – the year of the vision!
God’s blessing in this new year,