Sunday, January 1, 2012

Welcome 2012

Well, the first thing I did to start my new year was to give in yet again to Snickers's incessant 4:30 a.m. meowing and get up and dump some dry food into her bowl for breakfast. So some things never change.

My next task of the new year is to finish writing the sermon that I'll be delivering in church this morning. For the past couple of years, Christopher and I have teamed up to do the first service of the new year at our beloved church, St. Paul's United Methodist Church. Christopher takes over for the regular organist (as he does frequently) and plays all the hymns as well as prelude, postlude, offertory. I take care of the rest: call to worship, scripture selection, pastoral prayer, and sermon. I love being "the preacher girl."

The title of my sermon today is "Filled with All the Fullness of God." The idea for the sermon is that as we make our resolutions for the new year, we should consider the following strategy. Instead of trying to eliminate various bad things from our lives, we should try adding good things.

So, if the issue is weight control and healthy eating, instead of swearing off gluten, dairy, fat (every single one of my friends, it seems, has sworn off something), try adding more fruits and vegetables - so many of them that you won't have any appetite left for the foods deemed problematic.

If the issue is finding time for the work you love, don't spend enormous effort clearing the decks (or cleaning your desk) to make room for it. Because, sad but true, those decks and desk will probably never be all that clear or clean. Just start writing, or whatever it is you love best, and those other pesky projects will just find themselves somehow shoved to the side.

If you're wrestling with grief and loss, try adding some new source of joy. Remember the words of Carly Simon: "I haven't got time for the pain. I haven't got room for the pain." Crowd that pain right OUT, brothers and sisters!

And then, since this is after all a sermon for church and not just a self-help pep talk (much as I adore self-help pep talks), rather than emptying yourself out to make room for God, just stuff yourself full of God and then see what happens. Make more time for prayer, Bible reading, worship, service, and let the rest fall by the wayside. And here you don't actually have to do anything, really - just let God stuff you full of his goodness and grace.

So here's to a 2012 stuffed full of all good things for all of us.


  1. Happy New Year, dear friend! Wishing you a year filled with dreams come true!