We have a shared experience, starting March 12, 2020, with the closing of our physical facilities due to the Covid-19 virus. The ways we dealt with it varied widely. The shared experience was not being able to see each other - worship and Sunday School were all electronic (Zoom, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and cellphone). The Barbecue, The Quilt Sewing ministry, mission trips, and other in-person events did not happen. Our common community became invisible virtually (no pun intended). We realized in a new way that We are the Church, wherever we are. It became clear that mere physical togetherness does not inherently mean Discipleship. The mission of Embry Hills UMC is to welcome all into a nurturing community of faith, to serve others, and to grow in Christ.
We are still wearing our “Training Wheels” to live out that mission. But wait. Weren’t we still on our Training Wheels before COVID-19 hit? Yes. But the Pandemic gave highlighted impetus to put on our “Big Boy/Big Girl Pants” and make it happen. In the coming days, you will see how we are grabbing on and holding tight, not only to keep from missing our mission, but also to move it forward. Some churches folded in face of this fractured pathway. Embry Hills UMC has not been immune to fractures. But we’ve come a long way—and we’re still on the move. God always calls us to the impossible. I bear witness to that. God spoke, no, he called, and then had to yell at me, to leave the farm in Deepstep, Georgia, and “Come Follow Me.” (a most unlikely alliance) Just remember, “With God, all things are possible.”
When we listen carefully, we hear God’s call. Sometimes it is quiet, an inner prompting. Sometimes it is as dramatic as God’s call to Abram; “The Lord said to Abram, ‘Leave your country, your relatives, and your father’s home, and go to a land that I am going to show you.’” (Genesis 12:1 GNT). Sometimes it is as weird as the call to leave Deepstep. God is calling us now. Listen.