“New every morning is your love,
Great God of light.
And all day long you
are working for good in the world.
Stir up in us the desire to serve you,
to live peaceably with our neighbors,
and to devote each day
to your Son, Our Savior,
Jesus Christ the Lord. Amen.”
I’m reading Seven Sacred Pauses by Macrina Wiederkehr. Based on the ordered patterns of Benedictine prayer, Wiederkehr marks seven times in the day to take a breath, remember God and absorb the gift of each passing hour with mindfulness. There happens to be music to accompany each sacred pause (Velma Frye, “Seven Sacred Pauses”). As in Worship, the word and the music work together to meet a hunger in me.
Lines of the songs echo in mind
just as some words jump off the page.
With a musical line singing in me, I rose early and thought to do some computer work. However, with delayed updates and inability to figure out Wi-Fi codes, I gave up and walked with my coffee cup to the piers near the house at the beach where we’re staying with our Youth. Sunrise was at 6:12. “Set the clock of your heart. Breathe in the dawn. Raise high the chalice of your life, take the joy, the joy of being awake. It’s the best medicine of all....being awake. Being Awake!”
One lone golf cart with one passenger was watching for the Light at the edge of the water. Waiting, watching, listening for the Light of a New Day is a glorious way to begin. Boats going to and returning from fishing created that lapping sound of waves that lulled my restlessness with natural rhythm as the sun rose. Birds waking sang a sense of peace.
Jadyn & Blake began their journey in Youth Group at their first beach trip. I can’t believe how much these two have grown! We are having a lot of fun together. From jumping waves to digging in the sand. These two have not only dug in the sand, they’ve been buried in it!
We are discussing “What is Truth?” This is the profound question between Jesus and Pilate at Jesus’ sentencing. Jesus says that he “came to testify to the truth” and that everyone who belongs to the truth listens to his voice. (John 18:37-39) We are delving into the truth to which Jesus testifies and exactly how we might listen out for his voice. The focus verse is from 1 John 3:18, “Little Children, let us love, not with word or speech, but in truth and action.”
On Sunday night, we talked about how we know the truth, and how we know anything, really. How do we come to know God or that the sky is blue or the right direction to take when signing up for college classes as Skylar and Ivan are doing? To figure out truth, we used the Wesleyan Quadrilateral: Scripture, Reason, Experience and Tradition. The Quadrilateral is a magnifying glass for Methodists through which we make decisions and take action. Yesterday morning, Link and Chloe led us in a discussion of Jesus’ admonition that “the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32) We played a game last night that involved answering trivia questions from Sponge Bob to the Bible. For wrong answers, the kids faced being slimed. Blake was very brave, as you can see. Jadyn was full of joy at the prospect of getting messy. He may have even answered incorrectly just to get slimed! There are consequences for words, for actions in varying degrees. Last night, Rob led us in a devotion related to “love the sinner, hate the sin.” This phrase is not in the Bible, but often quoted as if it is. We discussed what is true and/or false about that statement. Our resource is Adam Hamilton’s book, Half Truths.
All this goes to say that we are
working together for good.
That we appreciate your support and generosity towards our Youth and their leaders through your love and care for them and through your tithes and offerings. We are taking turns in teams making meals, leading devotions, saying blessings, marking the beginning of the day with student-led prayer and the end of the day with leader-led devotions. I might even say that we are keeping seven sacred pauses...in our own unique Morehead Church Youth Group Way.
May you take time to make just one sacred pause this day, giving God thanks that this day is one the Lord has made and may you rejoice in it! You might find that Being Awake to God’s wonder is the best medicine of all...take the joy, the joy of being awake!
Grace and Peace,