Ponderings of the Spiritual Life Director 5-15-19

Perseverance: It’s Not a Summer Slump, It’s a Summer Celebration

Ponderings of the Spiritual Life Director

It’s only the middle of May, but I’m pretty sure we’ve reached the long, hot, storny, buggy days of summer. I’ve met people who actually love this weather. Can’t say it inspires me a whole lot. In fact, I feel my whole body wants to slow down, watch tv, and drink lemonade. I find myself not even knowing what I want to write about. Eh- it’s summer- time to take a break, right? It’s been a pattern over the last several years that once summer hits, we slow down church activity. The snowbirds are gone, people are taking vacations or feeling unmotivated to go to church, and so we don’t expect a whole lot to happen over the summer. And the food at potlucks seems, well, not so abundant. It used to be that UUCL would close its doors for the summer. But, as it turns out, that doesn’t do a whole lot to keep us connected- to each other or the larger Polk County community (and yes, we still get plenty of new people visiting us in the summer!). It also makes it a bit more challenging to restart ourselves in the fall (when it’s still super hot here in Florida, like the summer is never going to end!).

But the thing is, I’ve enjoyed this year so much with you all that I’ve decided that I don’t want to lose the momentum or the connections. Do I need a break? Indeed! Do we all need a break? Indeed! I don’t think that means we have to go into a slump, though. In fact, I’d rather not. Summers in Florida are like the winters up north and honestly, I need more connection and more activity to keep me motivated and inspired. How about you? So, let’s not slump, let’s celebrate!

I’ve started researching some ways to keep church lively during the summer, and I’d like to present you (all of you- that includes snowbirds!) with some ideas that are stirring around in my head.

  1. Let’s celebrate this summer! I’d like to see us plan at least 2 events that bring us together for some fun. There’s already been a discussion of a “Pride Prom” in July. And what about mini-celebrations every Sunday? Or every Wednesday? What other ideas do you have? Please share! (heather@uuclakeland.org)
  2. Let’s stay connected! I’m going to be gone for a few weeks this Summer, but I thought I could make videos of where I am, what I’m up to, and what I’m learning so I can share my adventures with you. Can you do the same? Facebook, Instagram- where are my social media peeps to help me with a plan?
  3. Let’s stay challenged! Pay attention- no matter what you are doing- to how the Spirit of Life is stirring inside you as you enjoy your summer. What are you feeling called to do? How can this calling help UUCL discern its mission and be a part of our creative and shared vision? And, what changes are happening in your life this summer? How are you learning and growing? Pay attention to the still, small voice. When we gather in the fall for our annual Water Ceremony, what can you share about how your life changed over the summer?

I’m really looking forward to keeping the connections and the momentum going this summer! And, I love to celebrate- there’s nothing like a good theme to get my creativity flowing and to motivate me to plan something fun. Yes- we will persevere in keeping the good energy and momentum going this summer! I love to hear your ideas, so please share! heather@uuclakeland.org