It has been a while since I sent out a Diary post. As the first snowflakes fall for this latest storm, I thought I would give you an update. I like winter when there is snow and this has been a good one. Fitz and I took a quick overnight ski trip early in January. We did our annual two-night ski trip to 7 Springs, PA this Monday-Tuesday. We had snow all the way up and light snow during our skiing on Monday. Yesterday was a bright, sunny, and cold day. Here's a pciture we snapped at the top of the mountain.
It hasn't been all cold weather though. The Church of the Brethren Clergy Women's Retreat (every 5 years) was held in Malibu, CA mid-January. I was able to attend along with two members of our Co-hort group that went to Italy in 2007.
Here we are in the sun. (Darlene Meyers, Pastor of Good Shepherd CoB in MD and Paula Bowser on the right, Pastor of Trotwood CoB in OH)
Quite a difference from the ski trip! We spent two afternoons walking barefoot on the beach.
If I've learned anything from these trips it is the importance of Sabbath rest! I hadn't realized how long I had been stressed until I got to Malibu. Fitz and I lost two close friends at Christmas and their funerals filled the weeks that followed the holiday. I had also officiated at two funerals just before Christmas. Even though there is much joy in celebrating a well-lived life, there is sadness when a friend dies. The hours of quiet, walking, worship, good sessions, journaling and prayer were refreshing and renewing. Hours of skiing with Fitz, especially when we get away overnight are fun and renewing for us. Plus some great exercise as today's sore muscles attest!
I encourage you to keep sabbath time in your life. Along with Sunday worship, we each need time in quiet, in nature, in prayer, or doing whatever feeds your spirit and renews your relationship with God. I can feel myself breathing easier now. We don't recognize how tight and wound up we are until we take time to rest. God DID command a day of rest each week. God didn't say, "Take some time off when you can afford it." or "If you have time, take a day off." No, it's 'Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.' Turns out it's for us too.
I hope you are part of the Vital Ministry Journey and participating in one of the small groups. If not, there is still time to join one. I have the names of a couple people willing to host. We just need a few more people to make a couple groups. You can choose based on location or time. Just tell me you are interested and I'll put you in touch with a host. Late Spring when all the groups have completed the six sessions, we will have a celebratory dinner and see what the Holy Spirit is saying to the Arlington CoB through scripture.
The ground is already covered and it looks like this will be quite a snowfall. Stay safe and thank you for being part of MY spiritual journey.