There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens, a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot. A time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build.
There are indeed times to plant and to uproot in life. Uprooting must be a painful process for a plant. The plant just gets nice and comfortable and has grown to fit the pot it is in and bam! Just like that it has to learn a new pot. The purpose, of course, is to give it room to grow more. If the plant is anything like me, I imagine it just wants to enjoy being comfortable a bit longer.
God loves us immensely, but rarely is his goal to make us comfortable. He works to stretch us and lead us to constant growth, but it can be hard and shock the system at times. By now you might guess I am no longer talking about a plant.
Sheridan has been a wonderful place for my family the past six years but God is replanting us. It is painful and exciting all at once. We will be moving to a church and school community in South Texas and we leave with nothing but love, gratitude and appreciation in our hearts. Humor me for a moment while I give a final charge.
To the pastors (I include myself) — don’t be so busy. You will not bring about the Kingdom of God by how many hours you work. Take time to nurture the godly relationships in your community of faith, they are without a doubt the most precious things we have. Take time for collegiality. Don’t wait for other pastors to call you for lunch or coffee — go out and invite them. What we do is hard work and much lonelier than people in our churches would ever imagine. Love and support your colleagues and those relationships can be life giving.
To the people of God — keep pushing us (pastors) for real unity in the body of Christ. We have made great strides and can make many more. If there is going to be a movement to break down the walls between us, it will come from you.
The Scripture above says there is a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build. I am praying the church in this town is in a time to heal and build.
Sheridan is a beautiful place, and it can do something beautiful for the body of Christ too. You can lead the way in proclaiming a time to heal, you can be the bright light for the whole church. I look forward to seeing your bright light shine from deep in the heart of Texas.
Fr. John Inserra is a pastor with St. Peter’s Episcopal Church.