As we round the corner into November, with the Thanksgiving holiday a little flicker in the distance, I begin to become more aware of how cranky and negative I can get, and am often spurred to ramp up my prayers of gratitude. So, here are a few things I’m grateful for:
Last Friday I attended the Compass Housing Alliance Fundraising Lunch. About 15 minutes into my chicken and couscous salad, they showed a video highlighting the new shelter – “Compass at First Presbyterian” (in our basement). I just sat there and pretty much lost it. Tears started falling as the video told us about how real lives are being changed – it featured two guys in particular, both working night jobs. One guy talked about how great it was to have his own bed, bed #16, at the shelter. And the best news: these guys are already close to getting permanent housing. I was overwhelmed with gratitude.
Last Saturday afternoon I was full of joy and gratitude as Rick and I spent a couple hours kayaking in our backyard out on Hood Canal. It looked like this – I mean look at how flat that water is, and those fall colors reflected on the water! :)
(This morning, just a week later, I’m looking out on a steel gray sky that is spitting snow…and I’m trying to be grateful for that, too!)
Last Monday we had a Session meeting (the Session is what we call the leadership board at First Presbyterian). The Session is currently comprised of the Administrative Commission members, most of whom are pastors and elders from other churches in Seattle Presbytery. These people are hugely gifted, smart, caring, and generous. They are prayerfully seeking God’s direction for First Presbyterian, and I feel so honored to serve with them. More gratitude!
Yesterday I was at a meeting downstairs at the “Compass at First Presbyterian” shelter, this time to strategize with a bunch of different stakeholders, including shelter guests, about how to make what the shelter is doing even stronger. I loved being there, getting to know folks better, and we generated a lot of good ideas. I even bumped into one of the guys in the Compass video and got to talk with him! Ha – almost started crying again!
I’ll be grateful this Saturday night when Daylight Saving Time begins and I get to turn my clock back one hour when I go to bed! Don’t forget to FALL BACK. :)
And I’ll be grateful this Sunday when we gather as a community of faith to worship God together, because we can’t do this life of faith alone. We need each other. If you get a chance, take a look at the sermon text – Matthew 23:1-12 – where Jesus tries to straighten out the religious leaders… (Hmmm, wonder how that translates to our context today?!)
Hope to see you Sunday…