Forest Lake Talks

A Message from Ed

July 6, 2022

July 6, 2022

Dear Friends,

Early Monday morning, while the rest of my family was either asleep or playing Mario, I went over to my in-laws’ house to help clean out their attic. Their house had been damaged by one of the recent storms, prompting a need to rearrange and remove some things before any new construction could begin. Fortunately, Elizabeth’s parents are super organized, so while I wasn’t looking forward to the manual labor on July 4, I anticipated a straightforward, efficient process that wouldn’t take the whole morning. As I suspected, it didn’t!

Their attic contained many of the same things as mine – empty boxes, old notebooks, books, a few pictures. The difference, however, was they had already cleaned out their attic years ago. Sure, there was some old furniture, old book reports, and tapes of my father-in-law during his years as quarterback in high school, but most things that were truly never going to be used again had already been purged. When Elizabeth and her brothers moved away, my in-laws carefully assessed what was needed and decided to clear up space in their attic and around the house.

I wish I could do the same, both physically and personally. Sure, my attic could use A LOT of work, but there are many things crowding my view and perspective of everyday life. Common “stresses” in my house, which range from transportation, snacks, enough sunscreen, overdue library books, all seem minor when I consider the needs around us.

Several of our church family members will soon be engaging in mission work, and you’ll notice online and in the announcements that there is a call for help with Family Promise and Camp Impact. These opportunities, coupled with the ongoing and exciting work of our Serve and Connect partnership, are daily reminders that stress takes on new forms and challenges outside of the comfort of our homes and church building. Service is needed. Work is needed.

When we remove the clutter that can limit our perspective, a perspective that causes us to be inwardly focused, we can open our lives to serving others and be the Body of Christ at work.

Is it time to declutter unnecessary thoughts and feelings that hinder you from being the disciple God calls you into becoming?


Ed Black

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