Someone asked me Sunday if I could make another meeting and after hearing my “yes” asked, “how are you doing?” Before I even thought about an answer I blurted, “I’m tired. Truth is I haven’t had a day off for several weeks. With people struggling, some in hospice care, others making decisions about Long-term care, a couple of funerals, marriage counseling, doing work for our denomination, struggling with vision, and direction of our 131 year old congregation I’m wearing a little thin. Then of course you have to throw in Easter and Holy Week events, Maundy Thursday which I lead, Good Friday which I prepare and lead, then Easter. Of course I forgot about the two Bible studies I write each week and a sermon that, in this entertainment driven world and church shopping society we seek to reach, has to have some kind of dynamics or we lose people all together.” I then of course realized I had overwhelmed the other person with too much information. They were just being nice they didn’t really want honesty.
In moments like that I always return and review the words of Oscar Romero who stated, “It helps, now and then, to step back and take the long view. The Kingdom is not only beyond our efforts; it is beyond our vision. We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is the Lord’s work. Nothing we do is complete, which is another way of saying that the Kingdom always lies beyond us. No sermon says all that should be said. No prayer fully expresses our faith. No confession brings perfection. No pastoral visit brings wholeness. No program accomplishes the Church’s mission. No set of goals and objectives includes everything. That is what we are about. We plant seeds that one day will grow. We water seeds already planted knowing they hold future promise. We lay foundations that will need further development. We provide yeast that affects far beyond our capabilities. We cannot do everything and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that. This enables us to do something, and to do it very, very well. It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest. We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the Master Builder and the worker. We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future that is not our own.”
“Be not amazed, for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified and whom you seek, has risen; he is not here…” Dear Father, allow us one more moment to bring Your words of hope that will convict, heal, raise others up. So they too can be amazed by Your love and salvation! Amen.