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NMC Blog

Discerning God's Vision Together: Holding Plans Loosely

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January 16, 2022

This past Sunday we awoke to the threat of freezing rain. Sunday School was canceled. Some folks came out to participate in the worship service in person. Many of us felt that watching the service online was the better alternative. The freezing rain we experienced this past Sunday was just the most recent example of human plans that needed adjusted.

For many of us, this year's Christmas celebration was so much more meaningful and fulfilling than what we experienced a year ago. Last year we were unable to gather with family and friends. Last year our Christmas Eve service was online.

This year was far better for most of us, yet not without its challenges. Some of us still experienced the disruption caused by illness. Leaders and participants made adjustments so that our services could continue.

On January 5, we had the first of our Wednesday Night Out for the year. We were disappointed with the low attendance. Our WNO Team decided to cancel the meal for this week, January 19. Low attendance by itself is not a reason to cancel, but the rapidly rising COVID cases are.  We are hoping to again start having the meals in February, but we know that might change. Stay tuned!

Let's be honest. This is not where we hoped that we would be as we begin this new year. Some of us know the difficult walk of life-threatening illnesses with friends and family members. Our medical personnel know the grinding struggle of overwhelming case loads.  Our teachers and students are faced with the uncertainty of wondering if tomorrow's school will be in person or remote.

And we wonder, what plans can we or should we be making as we begin this new year. Should we be making plans? Absolutely. Without a plan we muddle and wander aimlessly. 

And so, we continue to dream and continue to plan for what church life might look like once the pandemic is gone. We acknowledge that the COVID may never be completely gone. But, perhaps like the flu, with proper vaccines and proper precautions, we can find new ways of functioning and making life more meaningful again.

Yes, we make our plans. Anyone who has ever been to the ocean know that waves crash and then recede. We know that waves do not last forever. Nor will this wave of the pandemic.  We are planning our worship services. We continue plan for mission and service opportunities.

In the meantime, we hold our plans loosely. We pray. We extend love and grace to each other. This is not about me or about you. This is about how God continues to work in our midst. Lord keep us faithful we ask.

Your friend on the journey,

Alan Miller

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