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Trust and Grace – A Reflection

September 13, 2020

After completing my readings for Narrative Theology, I picked up Thomas Merton’s book No Man Is an Island. It has been quite a while since I have been able to do any reading from Merton’s works. Between our move across the country, finishing up my Thesis Proposal, becoming immersed in my new call, and this new class… well, let’s just say that the schedule has been rather full for me and for Denise!

In this week’s readings for Narrative Theology, I began thinking about how the Spirit moves in our midst and gently guides us on our spiritual journey. We are being encouraged to look at the narrative that we tell about our life from a different angle or perspective. There are many ways to explore storytelling and life that we will be exploring this trimester.

Tonight I am reflecting on Grace and Trust. This comes up, in part, because of the class reading and my reflections on those readings. It also comes up because Denise and I are beginning a new phase in this journey called faith, life, and ministry together in Carrollton, Georgia. To move in the midst of a pandemic is truly a test of faith and resolve. We packed up our home in Colorado and hit the road without having a home to move into once we arrived. It has been a leap of faith. Thankfully we have some incredible people who have come along side of us and are walking with us through this time of transition.

As I look at our journey, it has been quite an adventure thus far. It has been a combination of trust, thoughtful reflection, and action. We have trusted in God’s presence and guidance throughout this process. We have also trusted in our own common sense and rational thought processes.

God has definitely been at work in our midst as we have begun this new journey with Carrollton Presbyterian Church. The Spirit has been at work throughout the process of this call.

Yet God has also given us the opportunity to use the Gifts which She has given us to move forward into this new venture. Have we trusted God implicitly? Absolutely! We have also been experiencing the results of utilizing the gifts which God had given us to make life decisions.

Merton had this to say about trust and grace: Some who think they trust in God actually sin against hope because they do not use the will and the judgment He has given them… if I trust in God’s grace I must also show confidence in the natural power He has given me, not because they are my powers but because they are His gift. (No Man Is an Island, pp. 16-17)

As we walk through these challenging times in our personal, national, and global lives, may we use the gifts we have been given to do God’s work amongst God’s people.

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