Monday, November 19, 2007

What's on Your Plate?

"Grandpa, what’s for supper?”
-from the old “Hee Haw” TV show

This morning I am sitting in my office with a scratchy throat and very hoarse voice after a very full weekend. I preached Sunday, which would ordinarily be no problem, but my usual system for preparing to preach let me down. I’m a procrastinator, which usually works for me; it takes a while to get up enough energy (stress) to get started on anything. But this weekend, the stress, slow to build up to begin with, piled up in a hurry.
Thanksgiving starts one of the two marathons of the Christian year: from now until after New Year’s, we will be off and running, with cantata performances, Christmas parties, candlelight communion services, and we’ve got to come up with presents and bake goodies and decorate the house and do all the work that makes the season special. That energy (stress) is piling up too.
So what’s for supper? What’s on our plates? How long is our to-do list? In the busy and joyous weeks to come (“it’s the most wonderful time of the year,” so the song says), Where is the stress getting to us? And more importantly, where are we getting our energy from? For me, it’s the wonderful music of Christmas and Advent, the work of making goodies to share with others, laughing with the Tuesday morning Bible study, listening to the stories of expectation through the weeks of Advent, and finding just a little time for quiet, for rest, for being still and knowing God. It’s being together with my family in our grief for those who are no longer with us, and our delight in those who are. It’s seeing your faces on Sunday mornings and Tuesday meals and in the grocery store or at the coffee shop.
What’s on your plate? What’s your source of energy in this season?

PS: You may thank the MYF for the “Hee Haw” quote. They challenged me to use a word of their choice in Sunday’s sermon, and “Hee Haw” was their pick.

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