9/7/22 The Hound of Heaven

            I have been thinking about why I chose to be Moderator—about feeling called—or not? So I did some research on call to ministry. I came across a poet Francis Thompson who wrote in the late 1800s “The Hound of Heaven” about feeling pursued by God as if God were a great hound. The thing about this poem—and about my feelings—is that it doesn’t go away—it can’t be shaken free—like a hound, it keeps keeping on.

            My problems with this idea of being called is that it sounds presumptuous, like I feel special, chosen, standing above others. But that isn’t how this felt. It felt more like being pursued. I tried to reject it—I have enough things to do to keep me happily occupied and supporting the church as Treasurer. I am getting old. No one asked me. And yet I couldn’t shake this feeling that I needed to step up to the plate—I was being hounded.

            It is sort of like the hymn that always causes me to quake a bit:

“Here I am, Lord
Is it I, Lord?
I have heard You calling in the night”

            So what about you. Do you feel a calling? To do something? To find a way to serve God? Or to serve this community? I gave you some ways in last week’s blog—to help with any number of tasks that are needed to be filled each Sunday so that we can have a meaningful worship experience in community. These are “one shot” opportunities to do as often as you feel like.

            This coming Sunday, Welcome Home Sunday, is an opportunity to learn of the many ministries in this place. There are 5 Ministry Teams: Worship & Spiritual Growth, Adult Education, Children & Youth, Parish Life, Justice & Witness (which still needs leadership—does that call to anyone? If so, I may find a co-chair to join you.). There are also committees: Facilities, Stewardship, Personnel, Safe Church, Congregational Care. We have many ways for you to plug into ministry—which of them call to you? I am happy to talk to you about that—as will many other folks on Sunday.

            I hope you will consider how you might answer the call! Or at least take a peek.