the weekend after labor day
has been incredibly, wackily crazy.
it would begin with a community ice cream social on friday evening, on the front corner of the lawn of the church.
sort of a community outreach, welcoming back to school in the community, the pre-school housed in our church, the dance school, our people back from summer time..
just a fun thing
that was a lot of work,
after cleaning up late on Friday night,
I would be back early Saturday morning
for teacher orientation for Sunday School,
of coffee and juice and cheese grits and fruit and laughter and catching up,
and looking over the curriculum for the year.
after getting through with that event,
to think about worship the next day,
write my sermon if I was preaching,
making sure everything ready to welcome children to Sunday School,
write prayers and make lists for announcements,
and the like.
Sunday would be a big day,
singing "Gather Us In",
and blessing backpacks and bibles and teachers and students,
scooping left over ice cream during coffee hour...
by Sunday afternoon,
I couldn't be more tired, and full, and feeling like we were off to the races for another year.
this year was different, IS different.
I am serving a church, just on Sundays, in a very limited capacity.
not a lot of planning. I am not the pastor.
I love this church, and what I am doing.
but I am just saying this new year, this new school year
is rolling along without my gifts and skills and what I love doing, what I know doing. I missed getting do the "regathering" weekend, but this was my choice.
I get to be home more with my family.
it's just a different kind of new.
I am fearful and hopeful of what kind of new this whole year will bring.
(Oh, and I just had a big birthday, which has always been a part of my inner regathering in my heart in the fall--oh, and yes my birthday is also the anniversary day of my ordination. 13 years, thank you!)
Will my vocational path follow a different trail than full-time congregational ministry?
I have applied for some meaningful work that would use a whole lot of what I bring to the table, what I love to do, what I enjoy....
I just don't know.
And I suppose that is part of a new year, a fresh regathering of any kind--
Any thing can happen.
Thank goodness my backpack is blessed.