Grace and peace to you all.
This week, as we are noticing the lengthening arcs of pandemic predictions, we are also noticing many layers of transitions. We made a relatively quick transition in March from our business as usual to working and meeting remotely (or at least at a physical distance). Transition. We also noticed that in the last 18 months UCUCC has made numerous transitions of staff; ministers, office staff, and program staff (Thirteen years of Music Direction by Heidi Blythe will end on June 7th and a Transitional Music Director will be hired later this summer). Transition. We have had members die and move, and new babies have been born. Transitions continue.
Given that the only constant is change, this is more about acknowledging the pace of transitions and, from a place of faith, that these times offer not only challenge, but potential learning and transformation. Transition by definition is a liminal space, an in-between when one is neither in the old or the new. Our ancient Scripture stories offer a litany of transition stories where locations and names change, and people are transformed. When Jacob is running away (in transition), he has a dream (Genesis 28) seeing angels ascending and descending on a ladder and says, “Surely the Lord is in this place.” As Jacob is running away again later (in transition), he meets and wrestles with an angel in the night to gain a blessing (Genesis 32).
In this new multi-layered dance of change and continuity for our congregation and for our nation, we offer that this liminal space of transition might also be a place where God is, where there is wrestling and even fear, yet where we might receive a new dream and a new blessing. The liminal space of transition can be potent space. Whether through grief, a new dream, a new relationship, or a new story, transition can be faithful space where we can especially be open to Spirit’s moving and Spirit’s abiding Presence of comfort and creativity, of compassion and justice seeking.
Whether long or short, shallow or deep, our transitions are sacred times and spaces. Let us keep breathing, keep praying, keep serving, and keep connecting so that together we open ourselves to Spirit’s call and movement in such a time as this. We are holding you all in our prayers.
In the Tide of Easter,