Failing to succeed

I appreciate when an article inspires one of our writers to continue a conversation. This vignette was sent in to me by Jenn after she read a reflection by Abby a few weeks ago. It is such a profound concept, I love revisiting it. Thanks for this, Jenn. ~Eden

I don’t often play piano for our church services – there are only a few songs that I play, and only play them occasionally. Recently I played a song for our Easter worship service. It’s a fun song–quite up-beat once it gets going. I know it well enough that I’m prone to having my mind wander while playing it, if I’m not careful. On this particular Sunday, it was going well, I was staying with it, until about two-thirds of the way through the piece when I just completely up and drew a blank. I knew exactly where I was in the piece, I just couldn’t think of what came next – and even when I looked at the sheet music (which I hadn’t been following), …they were just dots on the page. I might’ve been able to pick up where I left off, but I wanted to find and pick up where I ought to be, had I kept playing, which of course kept moving further and further along in the song.
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Spotlight: New Church Westville, South Africa

Photo taken earlier this year at joint service for school and church communities, celebrating the founding of Kainon School 94 years ago

From the Admin – As a pastor’s wife with international ties, I am keenly aware of the wondrous ways that the Lord is blessing and caring for His Church. I find it both inspiring and humbling to see our church communities around the world prosper and I wanted to share this heartening feeling with all our readers who may not be aware of what’s happening in Congregations outside their own. So for a few weeks (and periodically in the future) we will be featuring New Churches that we find particularly inspiring. Enjoy, Eden

From our Intern, Tykah – I have visited New Church Westville a number of times and recently interviewed the Head Pastor (and my brother-in-law) Malcolm Smith about it via videochat.
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Winged Song

“They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run; and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

I was gifted with the opportunity to attend many New Church camps when I was younger. At these camps I learned a lot of songs about the Lord, and one of these songs had this quote woven into it. The song still sings inside my chest like steady drumming. It has kept my footsteps strong and my heart hopeful.

This quote’s beautiful description of the joys that can accompany waiting on the Lord, really brings this prayer to life for me. It helps me step into the Lord’s sense of time, and the trust that life requires. It helps me remember that the Lord is the Master of time and that He provides everything I need. It loosens the impatience I sometimes get with the pace of my life; from getting out the door on time, to having a partner to share this life with, and even the sometimes comforting thought that I get to go to heaven some day and take a long nap.

When I become too set in my schedule and stress about timing, I become miserable and anxious. I cannot imagine how everything is going to get done and no one or nothing is going to be seriously hurt, or left out. But it works out. Somehow I look back and can’t believe I made it through. I get the actual feeling that the Lord has just carried me to this new point, and that everything is alright. And it’s always going to be alright. I savor these moments, because inevitably I will cycle back into the hard workings of life, and get caught up in the lengthy to-do list that burdens my multitasking mind.
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Finding My Way of Sharing the New Church

I’m no evangelist. I tend to be quiet and introverted, and am usually too busy following my kids around to have much of a deep conversation – especially with people I don’t already know well. But that’s also why chasing my kids around suits me well. 🙂

Don’t get me wrong – I have plenty of big opinions when you get me one-on-one. And I can be plenty stubborn and pushy about what is right, and why I am the one who is right. And I care about and think about things deeply. But, because of my personality, that just doesn’t come out in my usual conversations.

Being raised in a ministers’ family (with a very outgoing, ready-to-talk-and-get-into-deep-things-quickly kind of mom) and now married to a minister, I have often struggled with feeling like I was the lame part of the pair in terms of sharing the Word. It’s not that I don’t think I’m doing good work: being a stay-at-home mom and fully immersed in the life of my kids is exactly what I want to do, and I feel useful doing it. But, if so many of my family member have poured their lives into sharing and spreading the Word, where is my role in that? It’s a question I’ve thought about frequently. Since I’m not comfortable pushing into other people’s business and (even if I wanted it) I don’t have a venue for public speaking like my husband (or a conversation that lasts more than 5 minutes for that matter) I don’t really share my experiences, thoughts, or feelings about the Lord and the Word. Continue reading Finding My Way of Sharing the New Church