Yesterday I officially began a part-time position as Director of Spiritual Formation at Grace Lutheran Church in Andover, Minnesota. Over the past year the pastor, Mark Hellmann, and I have gotten to know each other and found a kindred spirit. When he informed me that Grace was beginning an emphasis on Spiritual Formation in 2010 and was looking for someone to lead that charge, the Holy Spirit started tapping on my shoulder. I have to admit that I was resistant at first. Do I really want to do this again? Do I really want to engage with the institutional church? God’s response was, “Get Over It! I gave you gifts, now use them!”
I am very excited to begin this journey. It will be an adventure as we meet new people and experience a new culture of church. Having never been in the Lutheran context before, I look forward to exploring and being enriched by the Lutheran sensibility and spirituality. It has already been a refreshing experience to engage in a liturgical worship service. The piece that is most intriguing and liberating for me is that the liturgical service is not focused on the preacher. It is focused on the person and practice of Christ and our continual connection to the body and life of God Incarnate. I like that.
I look forward to the new vistas of growth that will occur in me and, hopefully, in the people of Grace. This Sunday I will be bringing the message. If you are in the area, come on by. Services are: Saturday at 5:00pm and Sunday at 8:00 Traditional, 9:00 Blended, and 10:20 Contemporary.
Another encouraging piece to this new chapter of life is that Mark and the church leadership is very supportive of my artistic self. Spot Studios is not going away. The position at Grace is only 10 hours/week and is actually one of the contracts for Spot Studios. I will continue to grow and develop as a freelance illustrator, animator, and writer.