Change of Pace in August


“August rain: the best of the summer gone, and the new fall not yet born. The odd uneven time.”  – Sylvia Plath

I’m not sure I share Sylvia Plath’s assessment that the month of August is the “best of summer gone.” However, she nails it with her insight on its irregularity. August is an odd time. Do we do anything the same in August? Do we work the same? Play the same?

This August at Bethany we won’t be worshiping the same. We are going to be doing the odd thing for us by having only one worship service August 6th through September 3rd, at 10:00 a.m.

It will seem a bit uneven for sure since you 9 a.m. worshipers will meet or get re-acquainted with you second service types. Singing will be that much louder. Some alarm clocks will ring that much later. Others that much earlier. And, yes, the seating on the pew will be a tad more cozier.

Just think of the fun we’ll have. Contraire to Plath, it will be the best of summer! In an incarnational way, we will testify to what Paul declares in Ephesians 4:4-5, “there is one body, and one Spirit… one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all.”

On top of that, we will have the best of time on our wonderful front lawn. Lemonade, ice coffee, and the regular brew out on the green. Our master game and activity leader, none other than Dianne Ross, will be coordinating games and activities for any who want to be involved. Or you can sit down and chat. Bring a blanket or lawn chair if you want.

To top it all, we’ll have a church picnic on August 20th. Burke Hagan and the fellowship team will be grilling hot dogs and provide simple drinks. Most of you will bring blankets and lawn chairs, but we’ll provide a few tables and chairs for those who require it. Bring a side dish to share. And yes, some great intergenerational games. More details to come. What a great time to stop and simply be with each other on the only green space on the ave at the top of the hill.

Perhaps the great asset of August for us at Bethany will be the Sabbath space for leisurely community. In Acts 2:42 we hear this terse descriptor of the church, “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.” We’ll enflesh that reality. John Ortberg once said that “you can’t do community in a hurry.” Come and slow down with us in August. God will do something with in this change of pace.

So, Bethany-ites, when you return from any travels, the best of summer may not be over for you after all. Let’s do something different together at 10:00 on Sundays. I think we’ll discover it’s the best of what we always do. Such is August, that odd, uneven, and delicious time.