When I arrived at Divinity School I met the Dean of Students, Joan Forsberg. She was kind of the campus miracle worker. She could figure out a registration knot or repair a financial aid glitch or help you solve a vocational crises. Both students and faculty relied on her to keep us on track. But what I remember most about her was how she presided at the communion table. We would crowd around the white wooden table to receive the bread and wine in a mishmash of students and faculty and she would lift the bread high into the air as she broke it. Her smile radiated when she held the cup and offered it in God’s name. When we mused about her marvelously gifted way of presiding at God’s table, she would wave us off and say “I just try to get out of the way of the Holy Spirit.”
I have been thinking about the marvelous ways that you offer your gifts to the community. A family recently called me and asked if they could scholarship any of the youth eager to go on a mission trip but financially strapped at the moment. A young groom stopped by the office to present an extra check in gratitude for the way the church supported his marriage preparation and ceremony. The Personnel Committee crafts policies that provide solid benefits for church staff. And countless folks dedicate time and wisdom to lead emerging church projects.
It looks like ordinary generosity. But what I see you doing, is like what I saw Joan doing. Getting out of the way, so that the Spirit of God can be glimpsed.
Grace and peace,