Hopes & Dreams vs Life in the Wilderness
Hopes & Dreams vs Life in the Wilderness
The semester is officially off and running. We are no longer in Welcome Week. The reality — with its essays, quizzes, lab reports, tests, and papers — is fully laid out for the weeks to come. It is that moment where we are beginning to find our “rhythm” for the semester, but also that moment that we aren’t just away at a conference or summer camp, but this is where we are going to live for the weeks and months to come. It can be filled with excitement, hopes, and dreams. It can also be filled with homesickness, feelings of being overwhelmed, and a bit unsettling.
At the start of new experiences there is often a collision of what we had hoped for, what we knew, and the reality that seems to be around us.
I think this is true for freshmen, seniors, sophomores, juniors, faculty, staff, administrators, coaches, and others who make up this community. For me when I am experiencing these moments I can find it helpful to think back to other times that I had the same swirl of feelings of being overwhelmed, excited, hopeful, and longing for what was. Often in scripture we hear the prophets, Jesus, his apostles, or even God reminding God’s people of how God has been with them before and will be in the future.
On Monday President Mark Heckler was our first speaker for our Monday Morning Prayer series and shared a remarkable story about the wilderness experience of his first 48 hours as a college freshman. (You can listen to it here.) Every Monday when classes are in session this year, faculty, staff, and administrators will be reflecting at Morning Prayer on the theme “Journeys of Faith: Wilderness, Hope, and Promise.” This will be an opportunity for us to listen deeply to one another and hear how God’s promises have shown up in our neighbors’ lives. When we listen to each other’s stories, and listen to the stories in scripture we are often reminded of moments in our own lives where we may have felt in the wilderness, when we were filled with hope, or when God’s promises grabbed hold of us in remarkable ways. We hope that this series will invite us to a space where we can share with one another about our various journeys of faith, and where we can listen deeply to one another and find ourselves listening more deeply to God’s movement in our own lives and wilderness moments.
Pastor Jim and I are also available to meet with you throughout the year as you’re on your journey. We love to listen and reflect with you on how God is moving in your life, the wildness you might be experiencing, the hopes you have, and to think about the promises of God’s grace and forgiveness we can cling to. You can book a time with each of us at our links below.
Aug. 28, 2019
- Archives of Devotional Writings from our Pastoral Staff
- “Some Lent!”
- (Your vocation here) of people
- A Point of Privilege
- Advent = Hope
- All will be well
- Are we willing to cross the road for one another?
- Can we learn to be happy?
- Come and See
- Did Jesus really suffer?
- Doing without in a life of plenty
- Exiles with Vision
- Fear not!
- Feeling at Home
- Finding Purpose in the Journey
- Finding Words for Times Like These
- Forgiving others – and ourselves
- Getting down on Jesus’ level
- Have yourself a merry little Christmas — somehow
- Holy Week and Taking Out the Trash
- Holy Week: The aid station late in the semester
- Hopes & Dreams vs Life in the Wilderness
- How glad we’ll be if it’s so
- In a time of uncertainty, these things are certain
- In praise of plans B … C … D …
- In Praise of Skeptical Disciples
- In the midst of grief, God will bring life
- Is there such a thing as being too forgiving?
- It’s a Three Day Weekend!
- It’s In the Bag
- It’s What’s Happening
- Killing off our future selves
- Lessons in fire building
- Let us work for real wellness in our communities
- Life Is a Highway
- Living in the Present
- O Lord, you know I hate buttermilk
- Of Fear and Failure
- On Christian Unity: When we’re not one big happy church
- On the Bucket List
- Pray and Let God Worry
- Preparing for the world to be turned rightside up
- Recovering from an Epic Fail
- Reformation calls for examination
- Remembering among the forgetful
- Seeing beauty in brokenness
- Signs of Love
- Starting Small
- Still in the storm
- Taking a Break from the Relentless
- Talking ourselves into it
- Thankfulness leads to joyfulness
- The Funny Business of Forgiveness
- The Greatest of These is Love
- The Magi: Exemplars of Faith and Learning
- The Power of Small Conversations
- The Power of Taking a Sabbath
- The Spiritual Gift of Hindsight
- To be known
- We had hoped
- What is your base reality?
- What to do after you find your voice
- What to do on the day after
- What we know and what we don’t know
- When bad things happen
- When joy and sadness live together
- When you offer up your broken cup
- Wilderness Journeys
- Year-end time management: Keeping the main thing the main thing
- Your Valpo roots will help you grow into your future