Those of us who have children in schools, or who work in the schools, return to school this time of year. College students return to their classes. Vacations are mostly over, and we return to a more routine schedule whether we are working or retired.
In the book of Hosea, the prophet speaks the words of God, calling the people to return to the Lord with all their heart. A popular meditative song is titled “Hosea” and paraphrases the prophet (especially Hosea 14) this way.
“Come back to me with all your heart. Don’t let fear keep us apart. … Long have I waited for your coming home to me and living deeply our new life.”
In this season of discernment it has been a challenge to lean into all the options that were before us as a congregation, a session, and a task force. One of the challenges has, quite honestly, been a fear of change. We like what we have. We are hesitant, and even fearful for something new. This pattern is something that the prophet Hosea knew as well. “Don’t let fear keep us apart.”
In God’s goodness, the session, with help from its task force, has discerned a way forward with few disruptions to our current congregation. The preferred option is to become a more multi-use facility, especially during week days. The plan is to offer our building and property as the host for one or more non-profits and their office needs. As the plan firms up, we will share the details with the congregation.
I don’t know about you, but I am looking forward to a return this fall. I am looking forward to breathing in the new life God has promised to us. I am giving thanks for knowing that the future of the congregation will soon be more secure than it has been recently, and that the time of uncertainty and stress that many have felt in the process is nearly over.
This fall, let us heed the words of Hosea. Let us return to the Lord and to the blessings of worship, fellowship, bible study, and prayer. Let us return to “living deeply our new life.”
Have a blessed September!