Our Mission & Coffee

by Kevin Bowen, Communications Coordinator


Tuesday morning, I found myself grabbing a coffee on 8 Avenue after a crummy red-eye flight from Portland. I was exhausted, in a way makes me both irritable and clumsy. And, as I got up to leave the cafe, I spilled my coffee on my brand new white sneakers I'd gotten on the trip. How kind to you think I was to myself then?

I was the opposite. I was angry at myself. Yes, the shame track cued up, "You're so clumsy," "You always do this." As I slumped through the 8 Avenue Subway Station in my brown-splotched shoes, I was already convinced this was a bad omen for my whole day.

How is it that, again and again, my mind strays so far from the perpetual embrace of God's unconditional love and grace?

God says exactly the opposite of what I was saying to myself. God says: "Hey! You are loved even when you mess up. Go a little easier on yourself (and others too). Remember, share, and have faith in my love today, not in passing irrational omens. I am SO much bigger than that stain on your shoes!

I wonder if I am alone stumbling into potholes of self-critical thinking. Or sometimes I wonder if we're a whole city of lost, busy, stressed-out sheep who keep wandering out of the pasture of God's Love.

I don't know about you, but God's Love is the wellspring I want to live in. I want to draw each day from the well of God's boundless grace and compassion both for myself, and (because there's SO much of it) for all my neighbors too.

At Advent, our mission is to welcome all people to experience and live out God's love. That's ambitious. Because honestly, our own narrow, fragile love we have for ourselves and others will always falls short. That's why we need God's expansive, unconditional, transformative love.

How we let God's love flood our selves and pour over to others? How do we stay rooted in that? How do you experience and share God's love? We'll definitely be exploring these questions more as we live into our mission together.

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Advent Lutheran Church