Mission Possible 2018 Cancelled.
I am canceling the Mission Possible: Service Fair and Lock-in on 5-6 October at Williamsburg UMC. This cancellation is not because of a lack of interest or participation, but simply because I am OBE, overcome by events. I am poured out; I have no more time or energy left to muster.
Week after week this summer I lost time to things I could not control. Some of the life interruptions were absolute blessings, and others, well I am trying hard to count them as blessings too. They included big life shifts and small distractions. While I can get sucked into the news cycle, I did not even have the headspace for that. I remember trying hard to focus on Jesus and give thanks. By God’s grace, I gave a sermon on Philippians 4, and I am convinced that I needed those words more than anyone else.
It is incredibly hard for me to admit defeat, much less to do it publicly. It is even harder for me to express personal needs because so much of my identity is in serving others not being served. If I’m honest, I don’t want the attention or possible judgment that comes from being visibly vulnerable.
I could ask for prayers for myself, my family, especially for my father-in-law, Mike, a 21-year cancer survivor who is losing his earthly battle, but I am not alone with these kinds of concerns. I have resources and a strong support network. Contrastingly, in our churches and communities, some people are silently struggling and quietly dying without anyone to affirm their humanity.
How many around us do not ask for help? How many of us refuse to share because we don’t want to be a burden or are afraid to be vulnerable? How many of us are caught up in our anxieties that we can’t communicate our needs or see the needs of others?
This week in Evans, Georgia, Scouts are putting in a wheelchair ramp for my father-in-law. They learned of the opportunity last week and responded with enormous love, but my long-serving in-laws had first to own their needs then share them to get this support.
I need to cancel this event so that I have time to complete my seminary homework and prepare my house and family to spend a week in Georgia to be with them.
It is even more frustrating to cancel an event that encourages our churches to get into mission, to anchor their ministries and small groups in service, but there are so many avenues of encouragement that missing this one won’t matter.
If you feel compelled to do anything for me, here’s my need list:
Thank you for your understanding and prayers,