As part of the worldwide Lutheran Church, we’ve been on the go since Sunday, November 27th, 2016. We’ve been on the go liturgically speaking. From November 27th to December 24th, we spent time preparing and waiting during the Season of Advent. From December 25th to January 14th of 2017, we celebrated Christmas as well as the Baptism of our Lord. From January 15th to March 1st, we remembered the story of Epiphany and the Transfiguration of our Lord. Starting on March 2nd, the somber tones of Lent filled our worship services and our sanctuary as the “hallelujahs” were silenced until that glorious Easter morn, on April 16th. The Season of Easter (because it’s not just a day) just recently finished up on June 3rd — followed by Pentecost and Holy Trinity Sunday. And now until December we sit in the midst of the Season after Pentecost, aka Ordinary Time.
I bring this liturgical calendar to your attention not to bore you with dates and “churchy” words, but to extend an invitation to you to make what we call “Ordinary Time” instead an Extraordinary Time! For the next 5 months, it will be easy to get tired of the green paraments, to get sidetracked by summer vacations, to think forward to school, and to drift away from our family of faith because our lives are extraordinarily busy during this ordinary time. Not only that, but we can and will grow tired, physically, mentally and emotionally with the craziness and chaos that is our day-to-day lives. During this time, don’t forget to take care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally — also, don’t forget to take care of yourself spiritually.
Faith and spirituality can take a backseat because “they’ll always be there.” And while that’s true, we don’t want our faith just to be there. We want it to grow knee high by the 4th of July… yeah, I said it. Our faith cannot remain stagnant, it cannot remain on the backburner as we continue on with the rest of our lives. We need to attend to our spiritual well-being. How do we do that? By lifting up a prayer, long or short, often. By reading Scripture and etching the words on our hearts. By worshipping with our community of faith and having faith-filled conversations (conversations that aren’t always easy to have). By engaging in fellowship, hospitality, and love for the neighbor.
This is no ordinary time. It is an extraordinary time. And you are invited to actively participate in it. Thanks be to God.