January 2021

Dear Friends,

 

           My 3 favorite hymns are: “O Come, O Come Emmanuel,” “Abide with Me,” and “This is My Father’s World.” All three of them share a longing that God will accomplish God’s promises and bring about a        wonderful, new future. They are rooted in hope with an anticipation of what is to come.

 

          We have pinned many of the trials and tribulations of the past several months together and named them “The Woes of 2020.” Yet, we know that the calendar year does not define our reality. A new year doesn’t wash away the stains of the pandemic, racial discord, and more. There is nothing magical about the ball dropping in New York City; it doesn’t magically fix the world around us.

 

          Instead, we join our voices with the hymnists of the past and sing, pray, work, and hope for the world that is coming into being. We pray for God to ransom those in captivity, abide with those who grieve, and bring earth and heaven together as one. We pray for God to do the work of the Almighty, and we will do our part to prepare the way.

 

          I am exceptionally hopeful for the coming months and year. I am looking forward with an expectant hope that this autumn will resemble those of previous years. I am looking forward to widespread vaccines and a ceremonial step into a new normal. Whenever that time comes- we will be ready. Until that time, we join our voices in the songs and we join hands in the work of hope, expectation, and love.

 

 With love and gratitude,

 Matt