Being a Christian in a modern world can be lonely at times, which seems like the opposite to what being a Christian should feel like when you remember that we are a communal faith, baptised into the body of Jesus.
Last week, I was standing on the corner or Gore and Powell having just crossed the road with one of the newcomers to St. James’. New to us and new to the neighbourhood. I was delighted as she greeted a friend from our downtown eastside community with a hug and was invited to a meal. This same person greeted me, we had not seen each other since the Easter Vigil.
Scott the security guy at the Sunrise Market appeared and said hello, and as that happened, Porter from Storm Brewing on Commercial Drive drove past and yelled, “Hiya Mother Lucy” out of his window with a big grin. At that moment I felt like I was in exactly the right place and it was as though God was a whirlwind of faces and joyfulness in the shared connectedness of our community.
Perhaps you’ve had moments like this. Perhaps you have moments where you feel alone in your faith. What is our response when these moments happen?
For myself, I am trying to get better at sharing them, good or bad, because either wrapped in community or alone in a personal wilderness, God is present and shows up in different ways. Sometimes God shows up in ways that are so concrete, we are certain, and the feeling sustains us for a long time. We revisit it and hold onto it in more difficult times.
I imagine that is how Moses did after meeting God in the burning bush, and what about Mary following her visit from the angel a the annunciation?! They both had concrete experiences of the divine that were committed to scripture and still provide testimony about how God has worked with humankind over the ages.
What moments or times in your life have you felt that you encountered God? How and where do you see God at work in your life and in our shared ministry here at St. James’?