Farnham & St. John's
Weekly E-pistle
An Interview with God
Today I offer something that has often come across my path: the one called the Internet. Maybe from one or more of you “out there.” I share it here. Called “The Interview with God” it generally appears with the reference “author unknown.” I have seen slight variations in its wording and have even taken the liberty here to tweak punctuation marks so the piece will more concisely occupy the space in which it is offered for reflection.
In this time of “sheltering-in-place” we have more time, whether we indulge in it or not, to reflect upon things. The activity of “reflection” is tricky – like checking oneself out in a mirror – finding likeable images that resonate with how we would like to be seen by self or others, but other images that may be not so likable to self or others. The concept of “true self/false self” offered by one of my favorite theologians Richard Rohr comes to mind as we consider how deep to go when checking out our self-image in the mirror. And the interesting conclusion that we are not either/or but paradoxically both/and.
You may read “The Interview” with ease, simply skimming lightly over the surface, or find yourself diving a bit deeper. Go with whichever works for you. However, God’s responses here do ring as truths, however provocative they may be for one’s life.
This “Interview” feels inspirited to me. Gives me something to contemplate, some things to reflect upon during a “sheltering-in-place” time. Interesting – it leaves me with the disquieting sense that it is not God being interviewed here, but you and me the readers. What do you think?
photograph by Sam Schooler found on unsplash, no permissions necessary.
“The Interview with God”
I dreamed I had an interview with God.
Come in, God said. If you have the time, I said. God smiled and said: My time is eternity and is enough to do everything; What questions do you have in mind to ask me?
What surprises you most about people? God answered:
That they get bored of being children, are in a rush to grow up, and then long to be children again.
That they lose their health to make money and then lose their money to restore their health.
That by thinking anxiously about the future, they forget the present, such that they live neither for the present nor the future.
That they live as if they will never die, and they die as if they had never lived.
God’s hands took mine and we were silent for a while and then I asked. As a parent, what are some of life’s lessons you want your children to learn?
God replied with a smile.
To learn that they cannot make anyone love them. What they can do is to let themselves be loved.
To learn that what is most valuable is not what they have in their lives, but who they have in their lives.
To learn that it is not good to compare themselves to others. All will be judged individually on their own merits, not as a group on a comparison basis.
To learn that a rich person is not the one who has the most but is one who needs the least.
To learn that it only takes a few seconds to open profound wounds in persons we love, and that it takes many years to heal them.
To learn to forgive by practicing forgiveness.
To learn that there are persons that love them dearly, but simply do not know how to express or show their feelings.
To learn that money can buy everything but happiness.
To learn that two people can look at the same thing and see it totally different.
To learn that a true friend is someone who knows everything about them and likes them anyway.
To learn that it is not always enough that they be forgiven by others, but that they have to forgive themselves.
I sat there for awhile enjoying the moment. I thanked God for this time and for all that God has done for me and my family. God replied. Anytime. I’m here 24 hours a day. All you have to do is ask for me. I’ll answer.
Quote(s) of the Week

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes."  (Marcel Proust)

And a special bonus quote:  

"Only the first part of a rainbow is the rain."   (Sandy Wade Hagan)

Congratulations to Danni Jones and Chris Plaice
on their wedding Saturday, May 16, 2020. 
May God's blessings on their marriage bring
Grace, Peace and Joy to their life together.
"All creatures great and small"
What a special time we are all sharing in our Zooming Prayer Service each week, seeing each other's faces and hearing each other's voices. And what a delight that some of our four legged parishioners are joining in. Whether their presence is only audible (a woof or two from our canine members) or visual like last Sunday when cat members showed up, they believe they have something to offer our liturgical life. Tiger Marks joined in early on, while Bob Crowley waited to parade in front of the screen a little later. No meows, but just pleased to offer their physical presence. Our four legged family members clearly understand the message "All are welcome." And they don't interpret the Divine's presence when "two or three are gathered together" to mean only humans.  
Tiger Marks
(in his box pew)

Bob Crowley
Join us for our Zoom Morning Prayer Service Sunday at 10:00 a.m. Invitation & instructions to be sent Friday. Mid-week Video Reflection coming tomorrow.
Food Pantry

Keep those food pantry donations coming. We will be delivering our June donations to Warsaw United Methodist Church Food Pantry on Thursday, June 4 th and those to the Farnham Baptist Food Pantry on Monday June 8 th .

At St. John's leave items on the bench under the church bell between the two doors of the sanctuary. 

At Farnham leave items on Jim and Susan Crowley's back porch (278 Cedar Grove Road across the street from the church). 
Food insecurity is a huge issue these days with increasing rates of unemployment and tragic financial insecurity for so many families. Every jar of peanut butter and can of tuna fish is a godsend - through YOU

The Parish Prayer List
Courtenay Altaffer
John Barber
Martha Berger
Randall Bone
Sue Bowie
Nancy Allin Bush
Anna Calvert
Mary Claycomb
Marilyn Day
Sumner Elwell
Constance Edwards
Bob File
Regina Griggs
Barbara & Harry Grander
the Rev. Howard Hanchey
Weir Harman
Mary Hertling
Rebecca Hubert
Marcia Jenkins
Stephanie, Nick & Donovan Kaywork
Ramiza Koya
Jim & Sharon Krider
Susan Lewis
Frank Lynch
Susannah Marais
Judi Newman
Les Merkel
Kirsten Palubinski
George Patrick
Don Phillips
Dennis Rynd
James Rynd
Debbie Belfield Stacks
Scott Strickler
Waldy Sulik
Billy Tennyson
Connie Thompson
Matthew Yates
and Rose Mary Zellner
Please e-mail any updates to the prayer list to parishchurchnews@gmail.com
June Birthdays & Anniversaries
9 th - Ben & Sallie Cox
9 th - Bill Carden
19 th - Anna Calvert
22 nd - Anne Neuman
28 th – Waldy Sulik
29 th - Evie Overton
There will be a Morning Prayer Service via Zoom Sunday Morning at 10:00 a.m. Further instructions will be forthcoming later in the week.
Farnham Church
St. John's Church