Last Friday, I went with our group from Trinity to Wakanda Waterpark in Menomonie. It was a great day for this as it was hotter than the surface of the sun. However, I was looking forward to getting just a little wet and then, frankly, taking a nap on a lounge chair. I love naps.
Anyways, when I thought this might happen I started getting pestered by Isabella Feeney. She kept saying to me, “When are you going to come and play Pastor Brad?” “Come play with me,” she was say and give me the puppy dog eyes. Well, you can’t resist those eyes, so I went out into the water with her.
What was interesting about it was that it wasn’t even that I was doing anything. I was just standing with her as she dove under water, went down a couple small slides, and jumped around. She would take her mask on and off her head every 35 seconds. It was a lot of fun. But I never would have gone out there if she hadn’s kept nagging me. And, I also realized, that it wasn’t about doing anything, it was just about being there. To be present.
Sometimes I think God in Jesus Christ is doing that to us. God just wants us to play, to get out into the world, to come out of our comfort zones or the things we want to do and be present in the world. The only way to change the world, or even to change a person’s life, is to actually be there. The only way to see the world as a blessing and to see the blessings in our own lives is to willing to be a part of it, to not shut ourselves away. It is like God is pulling on us and saying, “Come play.”
One of the things I am excited about for this upcoming fall is the ways in which we, as a congregation, will be present in the our community and the wider world. I’m excited for the school backpack program that we are a part of with the Boyceville Ministerial Assocation and WestCAP as we try to help kids with food needs when they are not at school. I look forward to our new ministry, “The Crew,” as we look to connect with youth 3rd-6th grade in an intentional way. We will be getting high schoolers together to start thinking about another trip to Pine Ridge Indian Reservation next summer.
Come and play. Come and play in the wonder of God’s creation, come and play in the blessings of life, come and play and be a part of what God in Christ Jesus is doing through you. It is going to be fun!