For several weeks we have been talking about the joy and blessing of paying it forward. Most of the examples given have been about doing something for someone else, like helping buy an airline ticket to visit a dying parent, or feeding the hungry, or raising money to support outreach ministries, or making blankets for children in need. We usually think of paying it forward as doing something.
We are all busy people, for the most part, and St. Dunstan’s Church is a busy congregation. That is very clear this week. Sunday night 14 people from our youth group and that of the Northern Lights International Ministry gathered to carve pumpkins. On Tuesday we fed about 75 people at Tent City and 91 people here at our Community Dinner. All week people have been setting up for the Canterbury Faire. Wednesday morning, as we finished our Bible Study, over half a dozen people swooped in to reset the parish hall with tables for the vendors and for the lunch. And, of course, the whole point of our Pay it Forward campaign is to encourage all of us to support St. Dunstan’s Church with generous pledges for 2015.
With all this activity, with all this doing, with all this ministry and outreach, we may need to be reminded that one of the most powerful and wonderful ways we can pay it forward is through prayer.
When Jesus taught us to pray he gave us the Lord’s Prayer, and that prayer starts with adoration and thanksgiving to God. “Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be your name!” We return our love and gratitude through prayer and action, and we start with prayer. We pay it forward through prayer and action as well, and again we can start with prayer. Pray to God in thanksgiving, and pray to God that the eyes of your heart will see the needs of others and that God will give you the means to pay it forward.
I encourage you to pay it forward in prayer this week. Take some time to give thanks to God and then just listen. Sit quietly and listen for God’s guidance and inspiration. Balance your prayers to God with prayers listening to God.
We already do so much to pay it forward; I want us to remember also to take care of our own hearts by taking the time for quiet prayer. As you pray, know that I am grateful for all that you do and all that you are and all that you contribute. I thank God for you and for our congregation.
Yours in Christ,
Remember – This Sunday is All Saints and our Ingathering Celebration
Please bring your pledge to St. Dunstan’s Church on November 2nd for our celebration of All Saints’ Day. We will celebrate the saints who paid it forward to make our congregation and our lives possible, and then we will make our own commitments to pay it forward by bringing our pledges to the altar. This is going to be a very beautiful service with the reading of the names of our saints at the Columbarium, renewal of our Baptismal Covenant, and the ingathering ceremony. After the service we will celebrate with a delicious brunch. I hope you can come.