"Is this the real life . . . ?"
If you're of a certain age--or just enjoy popular culture--then
you can't even ask that question without hearing Freddie Mercury's beautiful
voice singing back ". . . is this just fantasy?" I keep looking back at the Bishop's visit two
Sundays ago asking those questions: was that real? Was it really us? The answer comes back a clear and simple "yes!" I have dreams for Grace, and sometimes I
worry that the dreams are nothing more than smoke screen and fantasy, but on
that particular Sunday I knew the dreams were very real. Truly, our hearts sang--with Holly and Hannah,
and all those kids singing loud and proud for peace and hope. We laughed.
The Bishop--Greg--was funny, open, real.
We blessed and installed Arienne--that was very, very real and a dream
that became reality through both planning and persistence. Most of all, there was worship, praise,
honesty, thoughtfulness, and people of Grace who committed themselves to lives
lived in faith. And it all happened. It was the
Sure, church life can often be divorced from "reality." One of my deepest hopes for Grace is that we
will live a real life, together. That we
will know who are and even "why" we are.
Last week, following Greg's visit, we all received an invitation from
our Bishop's Committee--those folk entrusted with helping us stay real. They want our participation and input as they--and
we--try to shape vision and plans for Grace.
The invitation came with a draft description of a purpose and focus statement
for Grace (click
right here to see it again--and be reminded). Of course organizations create statements
like this all the time, and then they get tested by real people and real life. Personally, as Grace grows and evolves, I see
the risk of losing some sense of our deepest core values. We can easily be tempted toward the fantasy
of being all things to everyone. This
statement and invitation from the Bishop's Committee provides a solid, real
reminder of the things that matter most to us; the things that can become a solid, strategic
road map as we try to do that honest work of allocating time and dollars. But it makes sense for us to talk about this together--to
test the theory. The Bishop's Committee
carries the responsibility to dream and imagine, and also to test and
prove. I hope you'll help them do
that. Find a way to participate. Listen
to other Grace folk, and add your own heart and mind. There are four distinct opportunities so pick one,
and join in. Even if you've never done
this kind of thing before at Grace, become an "owner" of this place we love.
Session 1/Thursday, July
Past BC members
Session 2/Friday, July 9
Session 3/Wednesday, July
Men of Grace
Session 4/Thursday, July
In the real world I dream of living in, people work together to
create a life that somehow makes it easier for everyone to do good, and to be
good. I honestly think that the focus
and purpose being suggested for Grace can help that happen.
Faith and Spirit; Children and Youth; Compassion and Justice-these
are the things that enliven us, and could shape us for years to come. Linked with our primary principles of Inclusion,
Service, Discovery and Gratitude I see a real world taking shape. What do you see? Let's find out together-and (this is no cliché)
let's keep Grace real.
BTW: Still hearing Freddie Mercury's voice? Click here! (Ah, sometimes fantasy is fun!)