Pause

Look! I am doing a new thing; now it sprouts up; don't you recognize it? I'm making a way in the desert, paths in the wilderness.

God (Isaiah 43:19)

Pause. Breathe. Let go. Make space. Behold. God is about to do a new thing. Can you see it?

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Listen

They will build houses and live in them; they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. They won’t build for others to live in, nor plant for others to eat. Like the days of a tree will be the days of my people; my chosen will make full use of their handiwork. They won’t labor in vain, nor bear children to a world of horrors, because they will be people blessed by the Lord, they along with their descendants.

Isaiah 65:21-23

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Think

A few months ago, I had the chance to listen to Adam Hamilton, pastor of the Church of the Resurrection, speak. What began as a church with zero members meeting in a funeral parlor has grown to the largest United Methodist Church in the world.

Pastor Adam said this: “I’m not humble, but I want to be.” He told us that he parks in the furthest parking spot away each day so that he can learn humility by doing it. Sometimes it’s not just that we need to practice what we preach. Sometimes it’s that we become what we practice.

God tells the people in Isaiah’s time: do this stuff. Build. Plant. Labor. For it is in the doing that you start to become. Whenever the world starts to feel a little too unstable, we can fall back into the rhythm of work. Build. Plant. Labor. Keep doing these small acts of hope… day by day… week by week. And before long, we’ve become the hope we’ve been practicing.

Caela Simmons Wood

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Pray

Holy One who dreamed new dreams into Isaiah’s time, walk with me as I do the work in this age. When I feel overwhelmed, show me how to build. When I feel hopeless, show me what to plant. For it is in doing that I become. Amen.

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Go

We make space for newness, and God does not disappoint. Our cup is filled to overflowing with new life, new hope, new love. God is doing a new thing in our midst.

Let us go forth to share what we have received this day.

Caela Simmons Wood

Rev. Caela Simmons Wood serves as the pastor of First Congregational United Church of Christ in Manhattan, KS. Caela is passionate about examining and dismantling systems of injustice, especially those related to race, gender identity, sexuality, and poverty. Caela lives with her husband (who she met in youth group!), two sons, dog, and five hens (eggs!).

Son of My Soul

Ken Medema

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