It isn’t difficult or uncommon these days to share our varied beliefs and philosophies with the world. We have ample opportunity through bumper stickers, favorite t-shirts, social media posts, yard signs, donations, conversations, and more. Certainly each and every cause can be meaningful to us and inform our actions as we move through our days. What if, however, we undertook the exercise to distill the many guiding directives down to the few? What carefully chosen words might we deem most worth carrying?

Many, many Sundays ago as a restless kid in church I passed the time as kids do. After the doodling, I moved on to underlining and circling items of apparent note in the bulletin. Ultimately, I found the most striking and memorable line to be our motto that appeared on the front cover every Sunday under the sketch of the church… “Every member a minister.” So compelling, in fact, it necessitated tearing the phrase out of the bulletin, folding it up small, and tucking it inside the separating sole of my sandal where I had recently discovered a hollow compartment clearly meant for such treasures. I really, really liked literally walking around with that alliterative, empowering admonition close at hand, and did so until those sandals no longer fit.

One of the first things that caught my eye about CUCC was the somewhat longer but no less lovely declaration that we are “a caring community nurturing spiritual growth and working for social justice.” Wow, have you really read that lately? There’s a lot there to live up to, lean in to, and be part of. Being older and of relatively sound shoes, I need not carry those words in my sole in order to carry them in my soul, where they might provide mindful direction. Toward that end, I want you all to know that I value each and every person who is part of this CUCC journey with me. Whether virtually or in person, every member is indeed a minister when we work toward those shared and proclaimed values.

Proverbs 1:5 “Let the wise listen and add to their learning and let the discerning get guidance.”

Now go find your guiding words!