Don’t Keep It a Secret

Moses and Jesus both had secrets around their beginnings.  We talked about secrets – things we keep secret and why, perhaps fear or shame.  Some people keep their Christianity and love for Jesus a secret.  Some people keep their church membership a secret – especially in very progressive settings.  Well, maybe these are exactly the settings where others need to know more than ever that church is progressive and relevant and justice-oriented, not necessarily rigid, close-minded, and self-righteous.

Is our church a secret?  Why would we want to keep our church a secret?  You may feel we are not a secret, having been here for 50 years.  However, we are very small now and it has become our wry observation that we are the best kept secret in Foster City.  Several years ago, a long-time community member who attended my installation said he never knew we were here.  So – I suggested gently to you – if you are not mentioning IUC to at least one person a week who is not already connected with us, then you are keeping it a secret; keeping it to yourself.  This place is not just for you – it is, we proclaim, a house of prayer (or perhaps for spiritual growth or spiritual community) for all people.

Marianne Williamson wrote:  “We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence…liberates others.”  To the extent that we are a secret, as individuals and as a church – why is this so?  And what would be the special occurrence, the Moses “burning bush” event that could free us in our hearts; that would be the first step to telling others?  Let’s spend some time leading up to our retreat and congregational meeting thinking about that question.  Who are we?  As a church?  What is our identity?  Let’s not keep it a big secret.  Let’s not be afraid to push outside our familiar boundaries.  Moses and Jesus did.

Yours in love and courage
Pastor Carol

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