He has a such a beautiful, innocent face, Aaron. He has red hair, freckles, and a smile that pierces straight into my heart. He was also the first child to hear about St James and All Sinners, and the first child to tell me that he believed in me and thought it was incredible I was starting a church. This is what middle school does for people. It allows them to become capable of abstract thought, of coming into their own as adults, and just starting to make their own choices. He is soft-spoken, and his belief just unsettled me. I remembered a conversation that I had with Christine, my priest, and I had last Wednesday at Confirmation Prep. She said that the bishop was looking for more women bishops. Christine made me laugh when she said, “well, Bishop…. I don’t know what to tell you…” in her delightfully Southern drawl (just like Virginia molasses). SO, I put on my big glrl panties and marched right back into the sanctuary and said, “Rev, I know the bishop is looking for more women bishops. Is he looking for church plants as well?” She said that Andy’s main thing is that the church would be Episcopal. Oh my God, done as long as we can keep the All Sinners moniker. I got Christine excited about what *I* was doing. I asked her if the Episcopals had resources and scholarships. I stopped being the servant in the ground, and started being the one who made his master millions and millions of dollars. In current tax dollars, a talent was close to $250,000 (Thanks, Presbyter Lisa!). The first servant hit it big because he was willing to join the light. It is the exact same story we find in The Old Testament with Moses lifting up the snake to heal the Israelites like the Son of Man does in the New. We find that story in John 3:17-21:
17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
The parables are all the same story.
Invest in yourself, and you will reap the rewards.