I have a couple of things to share with you: first, I’m really excited about our Summer BBQ and Book Club series, beginning July 7th. That’s only a couple weeks away! We are reading selections from Flannery O’Connor’s short stories, readily available at the library or for a very reasonable price at your favorite bookseller or at Amazon. Look for The Complete Stories or any of her short story collections. We will also be taking a look at a new book of essays by Annie Dillard called The Abundance, also available wherever books are sold.
I’m also really stoked that OSA will be holding a public screening of Josh Fox’s new movie, How to Let Go of the World and Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change on Monday, June 27th, at 8:30 p.m. You might remember Josh Fox from a previous movie, Gasland, which was nominated for an Oscar. It’s the movie with the water that lit on fire. This one is about our lives and climate change—it’s very powerful and I thank our folks, particularly Mark and Shay, for putting this together. Invite your friends!
And speaking of letting go—we hear a lot about letting go in this Sunday’s texts. As I sit and write this, I’m in a holding pen for jury selection. And it has made me think about what it might be like to get sued, or to lose everything in an accident—all your faculties, strength. Loss is one of the only permanences of life: eventually, we all will lose everything. It’s a terrifying thing to think about.
And yet, Jesus drives at it this week. On Sunday we’ll hear how Jesus comes to a person and says—follow me. And the person says, “Let me just go back and say good-bye to my family.” But Jesus says, “Whoever puts his hand to the plow and looks back is not fit for the kingdom of God.” When Jesus calls, don’t look back. Just follow.
I find it tempting to soft-pedal this text. But I can’t. I think Jesus means what he says. So this week, let me end by asking: what is God asking you to leave behind, to give up, to let go? And let me say this: give it up. Go ahead, and follow him.