Saturday, December 23, 2006

Why Not Here.....

As I waste time this morning on here, instead of finishing sermons for Advent 4 (tonight) and Christmas Eve (tomorrow) and Christmas Day (Monday - but it will definitely be a wing-it-as-you-go sermon), I am struck, once again, by the faith of Mary and of how she was "already blessed" by her belief, before Jesus even made the grand entrance in a stable.
Which brings me to prayer request, part two!
Thanks for all of you who have been praying for St. Patrick's and our continued recovery. Those prayers have been answered in an amazing way! I cannot really yet give out too many details, but this week our vestry accepted the recommendation of our site committee to pursue one particular piece of property that we all feel is a FANTASTIC location for the new St. Pats. It is in the heart of town, near schools, residential neighborhoods, highly visible, high traffice, pretty land, land that is above Katrina flood levels, the list goes on. The process of arriving at this decision was hard yet wonderful, prayerful, and faith filled. I cannot applaud loudly enough the work of our site committee, our planning committee, our consultant, and our vestry. I am PUMPED UP about this decision.
Which brings me to your prayers.....please don't stop.
The only hurdle yet to cross to obtain this property is the price. We have begun negotiations, and the starting point of the land owner is too high. Our task is to convince him how we will care for this land, how we will offer so much to the community from there, how we had previously given over to the city a large part of our property for a city park, how we are committted to that same kind of presence at our new location. It is our hope and prayer that appealing to his sense of civic duty and our intentions will help us in the negotiations.
Can we claim this in God's name? Can we dare to rejoice in God's providence, even before it happens? Sounds kinda like Mary to me. Will you join me and our people in praying for this kind of miracle for our church?
Why not here? Why not claim God's blessing on the process we have followed and the prayers we have said? Why not look for the unexpected and use it to give God glory?
Will you join me?