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Sharing Our Stories of Faith, part Two

Last month I wrote about sharing our stories of faith, and how talking about our faith out loud helps us to come to a deeper understanding of our faith.  This is counterintuitive to the notion that we need to have our faith completely figured out before we can begin to talk about it, which happens to be the key insight in Thomas G. Long’s book Testimony.

As a pastor, one might say that I’m paid professionally to talk about my faith, but long before I became a pastor I found that sharing why I personally trusted in God was a much more real conversation in the Emergency Room waiting room than it was during a Sunday School class.  And I’ve found that it’s much better to share honestly and authentically about the times when my own faith has faltered and my trust in God has wavered than it is to offer “irrefutable proofs” about the existence of God.  

The truth is that we don’t have any irrefutable proofs.  We have only the stories.  We have the testimonies of the saints through the ages, and in my view the best testimonies are the ones that are brutally honest.  

I am very grateful for the stories that many of you have shared with me in my first year-and-a-half as your pastor.  And I’m grateful that many of you have shared these stories with others in the congregation, whether it’s been during private or small group conversations or as part of a devotional shared at the beginning of a meeting or in our annual Advent devotional booklet.

Thanks to our newly designed church website, there is one more avenue for sharing your stories that I’d like you to consider.  You may have noticed that our website includes a blog feature.  In our blog you’ll currently find sermons, “Pastor’s Ponderings” from earlier months, and some health and wellness pieces.  

My hope is that many of you will consider contributing to our church blog.  How has your faith been strengthened and enriched by volunteering with Heart and Home or the South Palo Alto Food Closet?  How has your faith been challenged and affirmed through your service as an elder or deacon?  through teaching Sunday School?  by going on a mission trip with Covenant?  by inviting a friend to worship?  by singing in the choir or ringing bells or sharing other musical gifts?  by having other people at Covenant share their faith journeys with you?

Whether or not you feel called to contribute publicly to our new blog on our website, my prayer is that we will continue to share our stories with each other.

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Jack


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