Greetings Friends! I apologize that there was not a greeting last week. The snow storm made a mess of my schedule. Did you miss me?
Speaking of last week's storm ... I do not mind snow storms. In fact, I rather enjoy them. Unlike raking, which I despise, I enjoy shoveling! Go figure. Both jobs involve the same basic premise ... moving that which has accumulated on the ground into piles. I suppose that the difference must lie in the physical act that is involved. Raking involves pulling and shoveling involves pushing.
However, there is one aspect of snow storms that I do not enjoy ... wind. Wind makes the job of pushing the accumulated snow much more difficult and uncomfortable. But even more than that, when the storm hits at night, I lie in bed listening to the wind pummel the house. I hear things going bump and thump in the night. I try to figure out what is happening, I try to imagine what might be making those sounds. I worry about what might be blowing over or blowing away. I try to ignore it, but I cannot. I try to block the sound between two pillows, but still I hear. It does not make for a restful night.
We do not need a stormy night to prevent us from sleeping. Just living in the world today can whip up storms that toss us to and fro. Those storms create fear and anxiety. Doubt and uncertainty make it much more difficult for us to accomplish our daily tasks, and sleep can be very hard to come by.
When I awoke on Tuesday morning, I was relieved to see that nothing was lost or broken. And as I looked at the eight to ten inches of snow, I knew from experience that I would not be moving it in one monumental scoop. I would move it one manageable scoop at a time.
Of course, you well know that the storms of life with which we struggle are harder to clear than a few inches of snow. Financial worries, relationship struggles, health concerns, grief and sorrow touch us more deeply and more painfully that an aching back. The COVID pandemic has added new storms to the weather systems ... isolation, depression, and loneliness to name just a few.
I read a quote this morning. It said, "The peace of God is not the calm after the storm. Rather it is the steadfastness during the storm." As we go through the storms of life, let us seek the Presence of God and find peace there. As the winds howl, let us listen for the still, small voice of God that calls out to us, "Be still and know that I am God. Be not afraid. I will be with you through this. Be not afraid, I will see you through."
This week in worship, our Sunday school lesson and our morning message will focus upon Jesus calming the storm. As the storm raged around the disciples, as their fear rose in their hearts, Jesus spoke to the storm ... "Be still." In recognition of Valentine's Day, our virtual Junior, Youth, and Senior Choirs will sing, 'What the World Needs Now is Love.'
Congregational ChurchUCC, SACO MAINE12 BEACH STREET | SACO, ME 04072