The title of this blog, “The Burning Bush,” is a direct reference to Moses’ call by God in the wilderness. Moses, we are told, came to Mount Horeb and there “the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of a bush; he looked, and the bush was blazing, yet it was not consumed.” (Exodus 3:2)
The title is also a take on our congregation’s name, Laurel Presbyterian Church. The mountain laurel is a bush and the church is called to be led by the Holy Spirit – who is associated with tongues of fire at Pentecost in Acts 2. So the people of Laurel, led by the Spirit, would be the “burning bush.”
The Spirit has led Laurel for many years, and leads us even now. Where the Spirit leads we seek to follow. One of the directions the Spirit may be leading Laurel is to be welcoming to all in our community. One of the ways we can be welcoming is by making our building open and hospitable to those who have been here before. To that end, the session (governing board) has been looking at ways to make our building and grounds more hospitable.
We are looking at doing some capital improvements to our building, including some overdue capital maintenance and possibly adding a parking lot in front of the sanctuary. We have received a proposal from a outside business to lease some of our land for the purpose of erecting a cell phone tower. More information about these projects can be found here (click and scroll down to “Announcements”).
All the buildings and capital, however, will not matter if the church – the people of God – are not welcoming themselves. So as we consider how God may be using our building to provide hospitality to strangers, let us also consider how God may be using us to provide hospitality as well. Who are we being called to welcome into our building, our homes, our workplaces, our schools, our community? How can we welcome them so they feel a part, and are not longer “them” but “us”?