And we're back

Tuesday, November 22, 2011
With my head on a bit straighter and for the most part my soul caught up with my body, ready to remind myself when I need rest, ready to work hard and work wisely, ready for what comes up in the next phone call...

Snap. First hours back in the saddle and we are into a couple of gut wrenching situations a few different families are going through.

It was a good break, and it's really good to be back at work, and it's really, really good that I can say that with honesty. I'm going to need that as we head into Advent here this weekend. It always seems like Advent and Christmas take the life right out of me, and I have come to brace myself for the season, rather than to embrace the season, and I wish that were different.

However, maybe with this rest recently behind me, I can enter into Advent with a little more, um, Hope.

We shall see.

Anyway, we are back at it.
Many reply emails shall be forthcoming.

Peace to your souls too.


  1. And peace to you. May the quiet of your recent time of rest stay with you through the harsh winds of the season.

  2. Thanks Doug.
    Been thinking of you lately too.
    I trust that in good ways this season will be different enough for you to be able to rest and be present to your family, because next year you may be busy crazy with work.


    Hang in there.

  3. Cannot be specific with the exact post or thought, but last year at Christmas time, you mentioned something along the lines of "we were going to do 'such and such' program at Christmas/church, but it was causing us much stress, and Christmas should not be about stress so we decided not to do it".....SOMETHING like that. Anyway, it was a life changer for me. I was in the middle of some program plans that were causing me to sit on the floor and bawl my eyes out, the plans were so frustrating.

    I summoned my courage with your statement running through my head, and informed the expectors that the program in its' original form would not be happening. We changed a Christmas tradition at church, but it was a hard change for others to accept/see.

    This year, those same people are telling me how nice last year was, it was simple, much easier, had more people attending...and that we should do it the same way again this year. Go figure.

    All that to say that your words gave me courage to see through the Christmas fluff and focus on the necessary and so I turn that directive back to you. Sincerely, may your Christmas season be peaceful, to the best of your ability. Keep it simple, keep it sweet, keep it real, and love your friends and family through it, most of all. I remember thinking how fortunate your congregation was to have a pastor who would consider his people's needs over a program plan.

    As I said, I may have taken what you said in 2010 WAAAYYY off topic, but I think, rather, I KNOW God used your words to help me. For that, I thank you and will likely think of you for many Christmas seasons.

    God bless and be with you in all things today!

  4. Hey Maureen,

    What a perfect way to start a day, thank you for that encouragement.

    I sometimes fear that my reaction to loads of stressful effort are more about laziness or a personal desire to be less stressed, which in both cases seem to be about me.

    But a good part of pastoral work it seems, is just giving people the permission to not do it that way again, in spite of the pressure or stream of tradition. I agree, Christmas should not be about how much stress our hearts can take, but about how our hearts are shaped by the One who came to deliver us from evil.

    Maybe thats why it isn't really clear when Christ was born, so we couldn't take it and make it into a stressful event for the church...

    You take care Maureen. Hope your season is great and minimal in stress too.



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