summer solstice!


Thursday, July 19, 2007

Friday 5 - looking back, looking forward

Oh, Sally—thanks for another early one!

LBLF is Today's Friday 5 from Gal Blog Pals

Introducing this week's F5, Sally blogged,
When I began work here at Downham Market a wise friend told me that after one year I would see a few changes and sense God at work- years two and three would cause me to question and to wonder why I had chosen to accept the post here and in year four I might see the beginnings of something new.

And so with that in mind alongside yesterday's celebrations I bring you Friday 5 Looking back, looking forward...
Today I'm playing in the Green and Growing color of the Sundays in Ordinary Time, and Sally, this could not be more timely for me! Just this afternoon I told senior pastor at Left Right in the City Church, "I'm formally committed [=scheduled, that is] to staying here through July 29," and that's about the story of my now. Now to assess some of the past and dream of a future.

California Day1. Share a moment/ time of real encouragement in your journey of faith

There have been so many, but for the most part it's been the situations that affirm what someone told me long ago, that I needed to remain in the inner city. Don't want to get any more detailed than that right now, since I blog as myself. Oh, doesn't everyone? I needed to say, "I blog with my real name and actual location!"

2. Do you have a current vision / dream for your work/ family/ministry?

Ideal vision: please see #3.

I'll also reiterate my final 5 answers to my winning blog for April's 100 things on the 100th day contest: 96. to be a friend to many 97. to learn to be alone with myself 98. to salvage a life consonant with my education, skills and experiences. 99. to make a difference in the world and in the world of the Church 100. to be faithful to God's call for my life

3. Money is no object and so you will.....

I Need a SongHelp fund and write additional grant proposals (oh, hope that doesn't sound too bureaucratic?) for an inner-city arts-centered, inclusive, creative congregation and community that gathers together to socialize with great food and interesting conversation and worships together with countercultural, prophetic liturgies. We'd be affiliated with as many actual denominations or church bodies that were interested, but probably in a "friend" capacity rather than as a member congregation. We'd have an exciting panorama of on-site classes in many of the fine and applied arts. The building would be a rehab of a very old one or newly built, giving employment to skilled people who are un- or under-employed or have been marginalized somehow from the mainstream. More later on that dream.

4. How do you see your way through the disappointments? What keeps you going?

Part 1: I have a long history of automatically bouncing back and keepin' on keepin' on without giving enough thought to what caused the situation and what the outcome of continuing along the same path might be. Of course, many times this has been very effective, but sometimes it has not worked at all.

Part 2: What I'm trying to do this time, and ask 1) what happened? 2) where am I - good, bad, or indifferent? 3) where is God calling me now and next? 4) how do I get there and who can I ask to go with me?

5. How important are your roots?

Isaiah 43:1What are my roots? Check my answers to #2 and #3...I've previously mentioned that I grew up in the inner city; by high school I had plans to become a social worker, though likely not a case worker or therapist. Partly because of that background, I constantly dream of living in an environmentally thriving, ethnically, racially and culturally diverse urban area that practice justice and celebrates differences. So much of that dream comes from my earlier life and lives, and also evolves from my own too-many experiences of exclusion and marginalization. I still think of parish ministry as a form of social work, though most of what I've been doing for these recent years has been in teaching, preaching and music ministries, so go figure!

6. Bonus=what would you like to add ?

Thanks again, Sally!


Rev SS said...

Oh my! How I'd love to be your partner in the inner city ministry you describe! You're on my read regularly list ... and in my prayers.

leah said...

Thanks, Serena--maybe we can do it together! Especially "thank you" for the much-needed prayers...

Sally said...

Thank you for this inspirational post. Prayers that you might see that vision come about.

Anonymous said...

Great dream...I hope you get to achieve it.

Hot Cup Lutheran said...

hey now invite me to the ribbon cutting ceremony! wowzers!!

revhipchick said...

"to learn to be alone with myself" i could certainly use some help with this one.

your vision sounds heavenly! wow--hope you find the right help and funds to make it come true! blessings!

chartreuseova said...

wonderful vision that sounds like something that you will make a reality.

And you know someone has to write the grant proposals and who better than the one with the vision and passion for the project.

revkjarla said...

Beautiful graphic/paintings, Leah Sophia. I love your dream....when I was in another part of the country in a different congregation, we were forming my ministry foci as the congregation grew...and one focus was minister of pottery and arts.....I wish you all the best and deepest blessings as your dream continues to grow and root....

Diane M. Roth said...

I love your art. You do draw inspiration from your surroundings. Thanks!