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Community Connections #4 | Amanda Burton

“I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive

it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.”

-Isaiah 43:18-19

It is no secret that God is up to many “new things” here at St. Luke’s as our summer

comes to a close and we begin looking forward to a new school year. As our community

navigates many big changes in leadership and in our ministries, we are being asked to

face some big questions together: what comes next? In which direction will we be called

to go? Who will be on this journey with us?

God’s people asked many of these same questions of God in the Book of Isaiah.

Wondering in the wilderness in exile, God promises the people of Israel that new things

are going to spring forward for them. “I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in

the desert”, God says to the people. At times, you too may have felt like you were

wondering in the wilderness, waiting for the new things that God has in store for you.

Perhaps you have felt this way recently, as the church you call home is becoming quite

different than what you have known it to be previously. In this time of transition and

wondering in the wilderness, are we not to also have hope in the new things that God is

springing up here at St. Luke’s?

I am reminded from this verse that God is constantly making things new, all of us as

individuals and as a community included. Although we don’t know each other yet, I am

holding onto the hope that God is about to do a new thing here with all of us at St.

Luke’s, and especially with our youth. I hope you’ll join me in believing that good things

are springing up for us in the here and now, and that God is carving out a path in the

wilderness for our community. Beyond belief that good things are coming, my hope is

that we can walk with one another on the journey, and that we may go forward into this

time of change with good courage. Being made new is no small task, but God promises

to accompany us through the process; I want you to know that I also intend to walk with

our youth and families through this process of transformation, and that it is truly a

privilege to bear witness to all that God is doing at St. Luke’s already.

I have so many hopes and dreams for the youth ministries happening at St. Luke’s, and I

am also reminded that good things take time and grace. My biggest hope, which I know

we are set up well to accomplish, is that we are able to grow in grace and love for one

another through the foundation of ministry that has already been built here at St.

Luke’s. Newness can certainly be anxiety producing but know that I am here to walk

with you and our youth through every step of the way. We are in this work and this call

together, to serve our youth in the best ways possible and provide as many opportunities

as we can for all of us to learn, grow, and love together. Thank you, from the bottom of

my heart, for the warm welcomes. I simply cannot wait to see the new wilderness we are

entering together!

In Christ,

Amanda Burton

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