When the dog bites, when the bee stings
When I’m feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad.
Oscar Hammerstein II – 1959
1. Congregations with the energy and fearlessness to make positive changes that alter the lives of their neighbors.
2. Pastors who spend part of their study leave time learning something that has nothing to do with church (even though it still does.) Note: If you live in NYC, Chicago, or LA, check out Course Horse and take a class in Indian cooking or Dramatic Accents (!) or Black and White Photography. It will feed your soul.
3. That moment when someone is telling her story and she realizes her true calling.
4. That time when someone is telling his story and he decides he can finally let go.
5. Sermons that you think are dross but then someone shares that it was golden for them.
6. Those frugal church people who appear to have minimal income but leave a fortune in their wills to organizations trying to change the world for good.
7. Church leaders who relinquish their long-time responsibilities to let new people try their hands at it. (Yes, I’m talking to you, Superintendent of the Sunday School Emeritus.)
8. Pastors who retire before the congregation thinks they should retire.
9. Congregations who present gift cards to their church staffs at Christmas (or just say “Thank you.”)
10. Pastors who share their imperfections – especially during this season.
These things make me smile every time. Happy Christmas Week, everybody!
Image from The Sound of Music. (And when did this become a Christmas song?)