Town of Marlborough Juneteenth Celebration 6/22!

Come as a stranger, leave as a friend

Be anxious for nothing but in everything

with prayer and supplication with thanksgiving

 let your requests be made known to God.

Philippians 4:6

I was listening to a popular preacher and author recently, Max Lucado. His sermon was on Philippians 4:6. In his sermon he talked about the level of anxiety in our world today and shared something which astounded me. He said the number of things we deal with on a daily basis, the amount of stress we live under as normal people would have been enough to land a person from the 1950s in a mental institution.  Lucado implied a person from the 1950s could not live in our world today without experiencing some sort of break. Pastor Max did not cite his sources, but I do not doubt what he said.

I often wonder what people from the past would think if they travelled to 2024. It never occurred to me that it would or could result in a psychotic break. The thought of it has caused me to think hard about anxiety and what can be done to mitigate it.

Having faith is certainly a way to help with our anxiety, and having a community also helps with our anxiety.  I talked in my Mother’s Day sermon about Jesus as a mother hen gathering his chick under his wings; it requires cooperation from the chicks. To travel under a hen’s wing, the chicks must stick close together, walk together, huddle. It is a beautiful image.

As we approach these summer months, let us look hard at some of the things we are doing. Maybe for the summer we can experiment with only doing the things we “have” to do. Maybe we should focus on the basics– or things we “have” to do. Things like eating, bathing, resting, praying, working, being with family and laughing with friends.

 Let us practice saying no to things we do not really want to do. This requires discernment because we are not always clear on what we want to do and what we do not want to do, what we need to do and what we do not need to do. I will lead the charge!

 I do not need a PhD. As exciting and smart as it was to think about perusing my education, it was all too much. Now is not the time. The vows of my Ordination included self-care.  I am not ashamed to admit it was too much. I just spent the last ten years going to school, and I was not as passionate as I was when my education was leading me to Ordination. I achieved what I set out to achieve, becoming a Pastor, and I thank God every day it led me to all of you.

Have a wonderful and restful summer!

Pastor Val

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