I've heard it said that sometimes you should be careful what you pray for- perhaps that's been true for me of late. About six months ago I sent up a prayer that some creative opportunities would come my way and lately that prayer has been answered abundantly. Here's what I've been writing lately:
1. On September 15 I submitted my Sabbatical Grant Proposal to the Louisville Institute. Thinking about what I would do with my three month sabbatical brought me a lot of joy and hope- I can't wait. Even if I don't get the grant, I will be able to deeply engage in the rest, renewal and delight I wrote about in my grant proposal.
2. The Youth Ministry Commission that I serve on for the denomination has been working on an Advent Bible Study Series for youth. The resource is going to be great and will be available on the web soon (I'll post a link when its ready). It can be used for Sunday mornings, evenings, Wednesday evening- whenever you gather with your youth during Advent. I can't wait for it to get into the hands of the people we had in mind when we created it. I had a blast coordinating the project.
3. The book! I get to be a part of a book that Chalice Press is going to publish (I think the date is early in 2010) for young adults. The volume is on all kinds of issues of relationships, dating and sexuality. My particular essay is on infertility- it was a dream come true to get to write it, and I can't even tell you how excited I will be to see the resource in print. Some really smart and creative people I know also contributed. I'm sure I'll have revisions ahead to keep me busy.
4. The next project: a sermon for our upcoming Regional Assembly next weekend. I am honored that I will be the preacher for our Sunday morning worship service at the event. Now its time to get busy and write a sermon!
So, that's what's been keeping me busy lately. Another wonderful experience came out of the book chapter writing. I got connected with one of the other pastors that write on the Rev Gal Blog Pals blog ring. Her name is Abi and she is a United Methodist minister in Alabama. I wanted to use part of a prayer that she posted on the ring for Mother's Day this year. She gave me her permission and we talked for 30 minutes or so. It was wonderful to get to know her and to talk with someone in person who I'd only been "virtual" friends with up until this point. We may even get to meet briefly in person when her family comes through TN on vacation in the spring. God is good! Check out Abi's blog here.