June 22, 2017
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
We have made it through another busy church year! Our Adult and Bell Choirs are now on a well-deserved rest. John is away on his well-deserved rest. Several of our regular groups are also on summer break. Many of you, if you haven’t left yet, soon will be going to summer camps. Our Adult Bible Study is contemplating a summer rest, we will make a final decision on July 12. Even I find myself yearning for my summer rest to come soon.
When we live life deeply connected to one another, experiencing each other’s joys and struggles; when we speak out or standup for the good and rights of every person; we can go weary. We need to rest. We need a deep and peaceful rest, unplugged from the world and all its cares. If such a thing is ever possible.
One thing that I have noticed over the years and my times away from Bethany is that it is not always comfortable because I have more time to sit with idol hands in God’s presence. And God always seems to go straight for my heart. God doesn’t let me skate over the surface of life. God is always challenging my thoughts and attitudes, my motives and perceptions. The Hound of Heaven will not leave me as I am but seeks for me, my transformation to more Christ-like ways. My time away is not always comfortable but it is good. I need it; I thirst for it. In the same way that I need and thirst for God’s mercy and grace.
Rev. James Hart Brumm will be with you for my time away, July 23rd through August 13th. Communion with our Lord will be celebrated on August 6th. Pastor James is a Friend of mine (you would need to be in Bible Study to understand the capital F!). He is extremely bright and capable Minister. I hope and pray y’all will be blessed and comforted by his presence in my absence.
P.S. If you haven’t read the poem, Hound of Heaven by Francis Thompson, since high school perhaps it is time to sit in one of Barnes & Noble’s comfy chairs and read it again!