Deacon’s Message (January 2017)
Grace and peace to you in this new year.
Having completed one month serving as Deacon at the Lutheran Church of Framingham, I have been delighted by what I have seen. You are a generous, faithful, and caring congregation. You honored your commitment to the Framingham community by continuing your seasonal traditions – delivering goodies on the Eve of St. Nicholas, giving Angel Tree presents to and hosting a party for children whose parents are incarcerated, making sure the folks at Heritage at Framingham had the opportunity to worship on Christmas Eve. So much love has been shared!
And, now, we begin a new year together. We wonder what God has in store for us. These words from Isaiah 43:19 give us a clue:
I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
God is up to something new here in Framingham; some new path is stretching out before us. Do we perceive it? Perhaps not yet but soon we will. How, you ask? By doing what Christians have always done to discern God’s plan – we listen to what God is saying to us, through our prayers and in our reading of Scripture. Now is a good time to recommit to these essential spiritual practices.
In your daily prayers, remember to pray for the people of the Lutheran Church of Framingham – pray for wisdom to discern where God is calling us and for courage to follow that call. Then give thanks that we can continue to do God’s work together. Remember to pray also for the people of St. Andrew’s that, as we journey together on this path, we might discover new ways to partner in ministry and mission.
As you pray, listen to what God is saying to you and, through you, to this congregation. Then share what you hear with the rest of us.
Likewise, we hear God speak to us whenever we read the Bible. I encourage you to begin (or continue!) to read the Bible each day. There are many ways to do this. Some people start at the beginning and read a few chapters each day. Some people start with a particular book – one of the Gospels, perhaps, or maybe the Psalms – and go from there. The Lutheran Study Bible offers 3 reading plans. Choose which ever way is best for you and follow that way consistently.
As you read, listen to what God is saying to you and, through you, to this congregation. Then share what you hear with the rest of us.
I pray that you will spend time with God, in prayer and in Scripture, in this new year, listening for the new thing that God is doing among us. In time, we will all perceive the way forward in the wilderness.
be well +,
Susan Lindberg Haley, Deacon