Love and Light

June 5, 2012 at 5:05 am (Uncategorized)

I have a few things in mind to share with you, but as I’m still not 100% healthy, I’m going to take the easy route today. Below is a modified version of what I shared with our two supporting congregations when the house led a worship service at each. We focused our theme around where the first church was in their lectionary cycle and service themes: “Witnesses to the Light.” Enjoy!

“About a year and a half ago I was sitting in my office at Bluffton University chatting with a coworker and friend about my next life steps. As I reflected with her about all of my interests and options, I once again became very overwhelmed at the thought of leaving my community in Northwest Ohio. I had a great job, lived in a charming little house, was very close to my family, adored my church, and had a very strong support system of friends.  But when she left I remained in thought and eventually landed on my desire to do service. All of a sudden the feelings of “someday I’ll do that” changed and became very urgent. I needed to do this now. As my mind raced through all of the practical reasons not to go now, I felt God answering each worry…and God continues to ease my worries as I find myself 2300 miles from where I was one year ago.

My decision to do MVS was rooted in faith and the belief that God could use even me. The final quote of Rumi’s “Lost in the Call” has become my mantra for this year: “Remember God so much that you are forgotten. Let the caller and the called disappear; be lost in the Call.” And so the biggest challenge this year has been to find ways to experience God’s love and then send that back out into the community as light.

In 1 John 4:12, “No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and God’s love is made complete in us.” I have loved the opportunity of this voluntary service experience to establish roots in a community, meet others who have done the same thing or are working on it, and then talk to people who wonder things like “What is a Mennonite?” “Why do you live with 6 other people that you never really knew before?” “Why did you move so far away from home?” “Why do you have chickens?” Answering the questions of fellow food bank volunteers, clients, and coworkers often reminds me of the important responsibility I have to embody God’s love and radiate light. It’s not always easy when I’m up to my ears in sad stories, customer requests, and dry beans. But all I can do is share my story and hope that people experience my presence, work, and listening ear as the love it is intended to be…even if they’re not quite ready to receive it or haven’t yet come to good terms with its source.

My time sharing with you would be incomplete without mentioning the community that we have at the MVS House. My housemates are by far the highlight of the last 8 months. Seattle is beautiful, my job is great, but the times spent with these lovely people are what fill me with love. I see God in the times we spend around the dinner table with one another, weekends when fun memories are spontaneously created, and each time someone opens up a little more about themselves and what life is revealing to them right now. I am so grateful for the home we have created and that I got to be a part of this community. They have given me a lot of love to share.

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1 Comment

  1. annie said,

    donde. this is beautiful. i don’t communicate this enough to you, but i am so proud and impressed and inspired by your leap(s) of faith in doing what you are doing. it is so beautiful to be a witness to the unfolding of different layers of your heart as your journey continues. don’t stop seeking, listening, or going out on those limbs of faith. God is using you, of that i am SURE. you are so valuable and beautiful. i am LUCKY and blessed to be your friend. DONDEDONDEDONDE.

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