Entering the third week of Advent, I find that I have been given an opportunity to pause and reflect on where we’ve been and what we’ve done. Never mind that the opportunity has been given to me by the cold I caught, as my body told me loud and clear, “Slow down a bit, I can’t quite keep up with you.”
Regardless of the source of this gift, I am taking the morning to just think about the phenomenal congregation called Campbell United Methodist Church, and the amazing things that I have witnessed in the last couple of weeks. Powerful worship; innovative and interactive seasonal devotions; generous alternative gift giving; beautiful and creative decorating; dedicated and diligent children, youth, and their amazing adult volunteers; hard-working singers and instrumentalists making extra preparations; dozens of disciples engaged in special mission and service in Springfield and beyond. There have been baptisms to celebrate, people becoming members of the congregation, generous gifts given to Imagine and our United Methodist apportionment, and so much quiet, behind-the-scenes servanthood that I couldn’t even begin to attempt to list it all.
All of that is layered on top of the vital, ongoing ministries of the congregation that comprise the three stairways in the pattern of discipleship – Live, Grow, and Share. In the midst of the Advent celebration, we continue in worship, faith development, fellowship, mission and service, generosity, and hospitality, walking the six practices of discipleship in their ever deepening pattern.
And all of that is just the first half of the season; the second two weeks of Advent and the twelve days that make up the season of Christmas are still ahead! I encourage you to pause and reflect every now and then, and please do not wait until you have caught a cold to do so! And take a look at the calendar of the congregation for the next few weeks, to participate in the wonder and mystery of this holy season, celebrating the active presence of God at work all around us.