(This post also appears in this week’s First Words.)
The Olympics are in full swing. Every time they come around I think that I’m not all that interested, and every time I end up getting hooked! I’m enjoying swimming, for starters. Seeing Michael Phelps back once again, and with renewed vigor, is fun. I think he’s now up to 21 gold metals! Katie Ledecky is awesome…some say maybe to be greater than Phelps! And how about the gold medal winning women’s gymnastics team and Simone Biles, who has been called the greatest gymnast ever!
The love for their sport…the dedication…the teamwork…the competition that is bigger than any athlete…the “behind the scenes” stories of the athletes who are, after all, real people, including the refugee team…all make the Olympics compelling. I’m hooked! And I offer a daily prayer that somehow the world comes together and becomes a better place because of it.
We have outstanding opportunities in the church too! The concert this Thursday evening will be phenomenal, nothing less. This Sunday evening we have the opportunity to pack meals for Stop Hunger Now. What a great intergenerational mission project! If you’ve never done it, give it a try. You’ll be excited to be part of packing meals for hungry people with members of your church family from 5 to 80 or so! We can use still more financial support for purchasing the food that we pack. Just make checks to the church and mark “Stop Hunger Now.”
We’ve been truly blessed once again by our summer interns. Some of them have completed their work and have headed back to college, but a few are around for another week or so. We’ll hear from one this Sunday morning. Many thanks, interns, for your hard work, your high energy, your blessing us with your many gifts, talents, and faith!
This Sunday morning you will also hear from our new Associate Pastor, Susan Giles. Susan, some of you may remember, preached for us several years ago, when she and I did a pulpit exchange. I have asked her this week for her first sermon as Associate Pastor to give what one of my seminary professors called her “faith biography.” I want you to get to know her, her convictions, her commitment to ministry.
Youth Sunday will be August 21. That day we will have two worship services—8:40 in the gym and 11:00 in the sanctuary. Plan to be present to see what God is doing among our youth and offer them our support!
Summer seems to be nearing its end…interns leaving, school starting soon, Back to School Bash in two weeks (August 28), Wonderful Wednesday returning in less than a month (September 7). Enjoy the closing weeks of summer and let’s celebrate each Sunday and other times we gather the amazing love of God that fills us, moves us, and unites us as the living Body of Christ!