Pulse – January 2018

This is the New Year

Who are you? Have you taken stock in these last few weeks, asking the question of what your priorities are and how you will face the new calendar year? What does 2018 hold for you, how is God calling you to move and serve as this new chapter of our life together opens up?

A great joy of the Christian journey is that we constantly called by God to be remade, resurrected and given a purpose. God offers each of us the opportunity, as we stand at this juncture in the calendar (and at every single moment) to discover true meaning and life among the community of God’s faithful and in the restored, awakened relationship with Christ.

This January marks a movement in our community as we continue to take steps to heed God’s call. We will be launching into a large building remodel project, updating and making our bathrooms on the main floor more accessible for all people. This will be a big undertaking for us, an important step in making our church more welcoming and hospitable. It isn’t the flashiest of projects, but caring for the simple needs of everyone by making sure our restrooms are accessible and easy to use is directly tied in with how we make space for all in the Kingdom of God!

We will be practicing our yearly tradition of gathering for an Annual Meeting on January 14 (28) as well. Here we will share stories of how God has been faithful to us in 2017 and anticipate the ways God is calling us to go in 2018. We will look back and look forward, trusting that God has given our congregation a mission to live out in our neighborhood and city, a calling we intend to faithfully pursue in how we steward our financial resources, the use of our facilities, and the ways we support our partners in ministry.

In this season of the church year, we also move out of the story of Christmas and into the life and ministry of Jesus. Epiphany, the season of God’s ministry and mission being revealed, will bring us to wrestle with the question — “Who is the Christ?” Who is Jesus, what was he about, who is the Christ that lives in us today? Encountering the ministry of Jesus with fresh eyes helps us enter into our own lives of service with renewed purpose and clarity.

My hope is that you get a sense of the Holy Spirit’s forward momentum pushing through our community as we launch into this new year. This is the new year, the new moment, the present chapter of our life together. We each have been called by God to participate in this chapter here at St. James. I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve alongside you all and recognize that God has brought each of us together at this moment of turning seasons to gather, to worship, and to collectively ask the question — who are we? I pray that you will find your place here at St. James and continue to bring your many gifts in the pursuit of God’s good work in our world.

Grace and peace,

Pastor Seth

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