Worship is Online-Only Through January 17th

Winter 2022 Newsletter

The Bell Tower

I wonder how many people made New Year’s Resolutions this year. The most common resolutions each new year are: exercise more, go on a diet, spend more time with family and friends, quit a bad habit, and cut back on spending/save more. Those are commendable resolutions, but I wonder how many people have already abandoned them. A recent Gallup survey indicated that 80% of people who make resolutions on New Year’s Day abandon them by February. Yikes! That does not inspire much confidence.

What I have realized over the years is that just because I want to do something, doesn’t make it happen. So this year instead of glibly making resolutions that have no hope of changing my life, I spent some time praying and asking God to show me the things that God wants me to work on. Since the inception of the pandemic, I have lost track of the things that are important to me and my personal wellbeing. I am aware that I am the only one who can turn things around (with God’s help, of course). After much time in prayer, journaling and meeting with my accountability partner and spiritual director, I have a solid plan to get myself back on track.

The pandemic has changed all of our lives, in big ways and small ways, but as we begin a new year, I want to encourage all of you to take care of yourselves. I don’t mean make a bunch of resolutions that have no hope of being fulfilled. Take care of yourself physically by getting vaccinated to protect yourself against COVID and wear a mask when you’re out in public. If you’re not vaccinated, please wear a mask to protect yourself and others. (I don’t want to have to change our current worship practices again.) You can also take care of yourself physically by getting some exercise. That doesn’t mean you have to join a gym; just get up and move around your house or apartment.

I encourage you to take care of yourself mentally and emotionally. The pandemic has taken a toll on our mental health as we’ve been quarantined and not able to socialize the way we were used to. Reach out to a friend, neighbor, or someone in the church family. Sometimes it helps our own mental state when we reach out and help someone else. If you are really struggling with mental health issues, please reach out to a professional. You can reach out to me, and I will help as much as I can, or I will put you in contact with someone else who can help. Remember that you are part of the body of Christ, and you are not alone.

Finally, I encourage you to take care of yourself spiritually. Spend time each day in the Word of God and in prayer. Many of us are doing the Year of the Bible this year and others are doing the Daily Lectionary. We have both of those resources available in the church office. Stop by and pick one up or give us a call at the office and we will mail one out to you. Our spiritual health is crucial to our overall wellbeing. Remember the words of Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp for my feet, and a light on my path.” May God bless you and your loved ones in 2022.

Blessings,

Rev. Dr. Christina Hosler, Pastor

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