Greetings in Christ’s name!
Therefore, as God’s choice, holy and loved, put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 13 Be tolerant with each other and, if someone has a complaint against anyone, forgive each other. As the Lord forgave you, so also forgive each other. 14 And over all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. –Colossians 3.12-14
Rochelle and I had friends in Boise who joined Boise Friends Church because of one specific experience. When they arrived at the church and walked in, the pastor, Harold Antrim, greeted them and asked their names. They were impressed that he seemed interested in each of their four children. After worship was over, they collected their children from Children’s Church and headed out the door, where once again, Harold greeted them. As they were leaving, Harold called each member of their family by name (all six of them!). As our friends tell the story, when they got to the car, they looked at each other and said, “We’re joining this church. Anywhere that someone cares enough about us to learn our names—that’s a place we want to be.” Eventually our friends realized that knowing and being known by God was more important than being known by everyone around them, but somehow, they sensed those two realities were connected to one another.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve been taught to be carefully aware of the physical distance between others and ourselves. I had no idea what “social distancing” was in January of 2020, but all of us know the term now. Sadly, that physical distancing has enabled a distance from one another emotionally and spiritually as well. While I want to be respectful of people’s personal space, and approach people fully aware that their boundaries will be different than mine, I also want to be connected to those of you with whom I worship each week. That connection matters! It lifts my spirits to see you and greet you and listen to your greetings—even if they last for just a few seconds.
I want to urge you to look around at the others with whom you’re worshipping on Sundays and to make a connection with them. Ask what their names are, ask about their week, their work, their hobbies and interests. If you’ve worshipped with us for a long time, look around for those who might have joined us in the past weeks or months. If you’ve joined us recently, don’t be shy about reaching out to those you encounter on Sundays and learn who they are! Let’s become a church that connects with one another even if we need to be respectful of others’ physical boundaries. Through Christ, we are bound together as one. May that fact become apparent and visible to all who see us.
Congratulations to Reed and Rachel Roher who were married on June 6th in Brenham, Texas. The proud parents are Thad and Tina, and grandparents, Joe and Beth.
We’re thankful that our students and volunteers returned safely from Dude Camp on Sunday. Several participants reported that camp included great worship of God and good fun with friends. This week and next, junior high and high school students will travel to Kansas to attend Camp Quaker Haven. Remember them all in your prayers!
Our altar flower sign up is now online. If you would like to donate the altar flowers one Sunday in honor of a loved one or special event in your family, you can sign up at Tinyurl.com/flowersFFC , or simply call the church office. Your announcement will appear in the slides that are shown before the service and on our livestream.
May the Lord send us out into the world as God’s change agents, who help mold and remake the human condition, with God’s grace and love.