Fry On Friday is my weekly attempt to describe a way I’ve experienced God in the past week. I figure my congregation (and a few friends) would want to know how this faith thing plays out in their pastor’s life. Last week, Mike, a fellow pastor whose daily reflection I devour with the morning sun, asked if we might collaborate. Each Friday, he’d circulate my letter under his Liberating Word header. Give him a one-day-a-week sabbatical; give me a wider readership.
Sure. Why not? Thus, here is the first week of Fry on Friday via Liberating Word. I now have a lot of people reading. This had better be good.
So this is the week God decided to go on Spring Break. I got nothing. Mike writes something every single day; you’d think I could come up with one a week.
The lack of material is not from lack of effort. I’ve set aside time for writing. I’ve said my prayers and exercised my personal spiritual disciplines. Result: nada. God does not seem to be stressed out that I need to make a good first impression on all these new readers. The Holy Spirit hath not descended upon me like a dove.
It doesn’t work that way for me, I guess. By giving extra effort, I cannot increase in things that truly matter: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness…those fruit things. Needing to meet a deadline doesn’t transform me into a walking model of 1 Corinthians 13. Having more readers this Friday or more people in the pews on Easter doesn’t make me have any more to offer.
Next week I’m going to try something else. Instead of fixating on what I need, I’ll try being grateful for what I’ve been given, which is a lot, actually. Instead of being stressed about what I need to accomplish, I’ll maybe trust that the God who has provided everything so far won’t suddenly abandon me. And if my next Fry on Friday dies a prenatal death, I’ll just have to believe in resurrection from the dead.
I’ve preached all three of those things for years. Practicing them, however, takes the challenge to a new level.