A "Holy" Holey T-Shirt
The other day I was hanging up the laundry and noticed that one of our “sleeping shirts” had begun to go to pieces during its most recent washing. (We have t-shirts that are too worn, faded, stained, or misshapen to wear in public, but they make great shirts in which to sleep.) As I looked at that disintegrating shirt, some clarity came to me.
older son Luke is choosing a college this month; it is for him and for us the
end of a chapter in our lives and the beginning of a new adventure. As I have been contemplating this transition,
I have come to a realization: our sons
have grown up outside the
was pastor of a church in
following year Ben, Luke, and I went to the annual International Ministries World
Mission Conference at
all began with a lunch and then a 7-day mission trip to
May 18 to 25, International Ministries, along with the American Baptist Home Mission Society and the American Baptist Ministers Council, are hosting a Hear the Call conference for people who are feeling a call to ministry in their community, in vocational ministry, or overseas, followed by a World Mission Conference. This event could be a mile-marker for some people; you might want to be careful! All of us every week are at risk of hearing the call of God in our lives. We listen and respond; and, now and then, we pause to measure the distance traveled.
The Hebrews were told to make mounds of stones as monuments to how God had led them, mile-markers along the way:
Joshua said to them, “Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the middle of the Jordon, and each of you take up a stone on his shoulder, one for each of the tribes of the Israelites, so that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, “What do those stones mean to you?” 7then you shall tell them that the waters of the
were cut off in front of the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it crossed over the Jordan Jordan, the waters of the were cut off. So these stones shall be to the Israelites a memorial for ever.’ (Joshua 4:5-7) Jordan
I am going to keep this t-shirt as a memorial to a corner I rounded many years ago. It marks a holy place in my life; it is not nearly as sensational as a bush that burns without being consumed but nonetheless an important moment in my journey. It clarifies for me why I am living the life I am living.
May God sustain you as you turn corners along your journey,
Jim (along with Debbie, Ben, and Luke)
As you pray, please remember to:
-Give thanks for the calling of God in the lives of immigrant church leaders as they prepare to serve their congregations.
thanks for the
-Ask that God will soften the hearts of Italian churches who have buildings that could be used by immigrant churches.
-Ask God to prepare the women who will participate in the women’s conference this June, both the leaders from the States and the immigrant women who will attend.
-Ask God to call individuals and churches to help us reach 100% of our support goal.