Transitions // M-Note 1.22.2021

 
Gathering,

It is a season of transitions. Of course, the most obvious one occurred Wednesday when we transitioned leadership in Washington, D.C. But, our government is not the only thing in transition. With the distribution of a vaccine, there is a sense that we may be at least beginning a transition out of this global pandemic. We are in a new year and a new season of life. My kids began a new semester of school, and I turned my attention to the next big holiday (yes we are already having Easter conversations). On a more personal level, we are all experiencing various transitions – in our relationships, our work, our families, our routines, maybe even our inner spirit. It is a season of transitions.
 
At first, the changing nature of transitional seasons can be scary. It brings up uncertainty, it comes with losses of various kinds, and it requires new patterns and habits. Transitions introduce unpredictability and anxiety into our lives.  These can be seasons of grief when we sense that we are losing something that matters to us. But, transitions can also be incredibly hopeful times. We saw that last week in our nation’s capital. There was a feeling of forward movement, of possibility, and a sense that a new day was ahead. Transitions open up new opportunities, they break our routines, and give us the chance to reevaluate. Transitions are times that we can reorient ourselves and change direction. We may grieve in the midst of change, but we also can be born again.
 
Whatever you may be feeling today, and whatever you are going through, my prayer is that you can see this time of transition in your life as one of hope and promise. For those of you in pain, I am praying that God breaks open that pain to reveal possibility. For those that feel anxious about life, I pray that anxiety can give way to new opportunities. And for those that are experiencing loss, I pray you can also experience new life.
 
On a national level, things are changing. I am taking this as an opportunity to hope, an opportunity to dream, and an opportunity to do my part to be light. I hope you will join me in that hope. In his inaugural address, President Biden quoted Psalm 30 when he said,
 
Weeping may linger for the night, but joy comes with the morning.
 
Join me in praying that God may bring that new day – for you, for me, for us, for our church, and for our country. I will close with the words of poet Amanda Gormon, words I found to be both biblical and inspiring. 

The new dawn blooms as we free it
For there is always light,
if only we’re brave enough to see it
If only we’re brave enough to be it
 
Peace,
Matt
 
P.S. This week I will finish our series Frame of Mind. I challenge you to try something this week. Text or call a friend. Invite them to worship at the same time as you and listen to the message. Maybe you can even follow up with them afterwards and talk to them about the experience. The Gathering is creating a Christian community that is compelling for new generations. We all have people in our life going through a transition, and your invitation may come at just the right time!
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