CHANGES IN AND WELCOME TO THE CAPITAL DISTRICT
Changes of appointment in the district means that several dear friends are leaving for new ministries and new stages in their lives. We want to give our love and farewell to:
Gina Barrow, Wendy Bishop, Liz Hounshell, Kwan Seok Kim, Don Mitchell, Steve Murphy, Tom Newman, Reggie Ponder Sr, Bob Rose, and Bill Spencer
And we want to welcome these new friends who come to serve in the Capital District:
Rebecca Bradley, Cole Breit, Ken Helms Jr, Grayson Hicks-Dye, Randy Innes, Andrew Mannes, Cody Marks, Won Namkong, Tim Russell, Juan Turcios, and Kristina Yeatts.
In addition we give thanks to those who are moving within the Capital District:
Jonathan Jefferies moving to Asbury UMC – Raleigh,
Eric Lindblade moving to Ebenezer UMC – Four Oaks,
Clay Parker moving to Elevation UMC,
and Liz Roberts taking a second appointment to Raleigh Wesley Foundation.
Please keep all these folks and their families in your prayers. Say hello to a new neighbor – call or text them a welcome – and stay in touch with all those who are in new places of service so that they know we are praying for them “back home.”
Grace and peace!
During college I had a professor with a relatively unique eye condition. He explained it at the end of the first class as what he called his “out of joint eyes.” With his condition, while he appeared to be focusing on the person seated two desks to your left he was in reality looking right at you. It was incredibly disturbing to some of my classmates who wanted the security of knowing when they were and when they weren’t in his direct line of sight. The only cure was to always pay attention and be ready to speak the moment he called on you.
This same professor told me once, after class, that his out of joint eyes were a gift: they reminded him to always remember that the world is always out of joint to someone and so to be kind to everyone.
It hardly bears saying that the world is out of joint just now: pandemic distancing and fears, racism and the oppression of people for simply being who they were born to be, financial upsets and uncertainties, and all the usual ups and downs of life. “Out of joint” is one way to describe what I feel at any rate. How do we as the Church, Jesus’ Body, deal with all that frustration?
Christians remember that Jesus’ own pains included having his bones out of joint (Psalm 22:14). That means we follow and love a Lord who knows our pains — and shows in the Resurrection a life beyond pain — but a Lord who very much first understands and experiences our ‘out of jointness’ because he has known it too. So we as the Church, following the one who said whatever you do to another it’s as if you are doing it to me, will work to redeem the world and our times: we will care for the sick, we will indeed dismantle unjust systems, and we will show the world we care as Jesus cares for us.
And, disjointed as the world is, I try to remember another biblical reference to being out of joint. In Proverbs, 25:19, we’re told that it’s “disjointed” or like walking with a lame foot to trust in someone who is faithless. The obverse is true: we’re to be straightforward and kind to each other. In the Church, we are, called by the Spirit, to live a life of joy and peace. God calls us to be the Church; the world needs the Church; and so God asks us to be faithful as the Church, forgiving to each other, up building each other, and straightforward to each other, all to straighten out the disjointedness of life.
That is an exciting call: one we are equipped to fulfill by the power of Jesus, who knowing our brokenness is still at work in us. The call to straighten out the disjointedness of life is fulfilling for all of us. And fulfilling that call will set the world on fire: the fire of God in the Spirit that renews and changes all of us.
And that is hope: hope for the world and hope for today and hope for tomorrow.
Thanks be to God!
If you would like to view past editions of Hello from Harvey, follow this link: https://capitaldistrictnc.org/category/from-the-ds/