These two words could be spoken at a child dedication, a
baptism, or a wedding. Each of these occasions
honors a particular way of being in relationship. One in which mutual commitments offer
themselves as fertile soil for growth and flourishing.
These words also show up in the middle of our new Membership
Commitment statement. Congregational
life is, if nothing else, relational.
Our relationship with one another.
Our relationship with creation and the Divine. “We commit…” is followed by seven different
statements that name who we aspire to be together.
Those statements will serve as a basis for a seven week
worship series beginning this Sunday.
The focus won’t be so much on membership – we’ll save that for the
spring – as it will be on taking a deeper dive into these core
commitments. This is fresh language for
us, and hopefully offers itself as fertile soil.
This week: “We commit
to gather for worship and around the table where everyone is welcome.”
The whole statement is posted on our website HERE.
In looking this over again, these seven commitments feel
like a companion piece to the Twelve
Scriptures project we did back in 2014, another way of stating what is of
central importance to us. Both processes
invited input through focus groups as a way of listening to one another and
moving toward a final something we could claim together.
Too many commitments, or commitments with a legalistic
emphasis, can be overbearing. But there’s
something necessary, even freeing, about commitments that remind us how to be
in right relationship with those around us, and how our lives might be a small
reflection of the Divine life.