Friday, October 19, 2007


It happened around the supper table at the University of Iowa. I was talking with Laura, a student who was there because she is interested in exploring where God is calling her to go next. Suddenly, as she told me about her parents and dreams, something clicked and I really SAW her. "O Laura," I said with surprise, "We know each other!" She said back, "You're Joy!"

Both of us had aged quite a bit since we saw each other last but Laura is the only child of very good friends of my parents. The kind of friends who come faithfully to the funeral of your grandparent, even if they haven't seen you for awhile before that. It was an incredible experience to be sitting face-to-face with someone and then suddenly, to recognize her as family.

I was very moved by this experience along the journey in Iowa, but maybe not so surprised now that I think about it. This is what happens in the family of God. Suddenly, as we listen, we come face-to-face with someone we know, we love, we recognize as family - and at the same time, we are fully known. And in the meal, we experience the body of Christ.

Giving thanks for witnesses along the way,
Pastor Joy

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