Feeling Full

Y’all, I’m full. It could be because I just had an amazing breakfast of smoked salmon eggs benedict at the Hen House in Minneapolis (be jealous), or that I’ve eaten fantastic food like that all week, or that I’ve been fed spiritually with sermons and lectures from some of the top speakers not only from this country but around the world.westminster_presbyterian_church-large

I’m full in the best way. I’ve been fed with spiritual food that will last far longer than our earthly food. And I can’t wait to share it all with you. Since I took copious notes each day, that shouldn’t be a problem!

I thought of you all and your love of music Monday night as 1800 of us listened to David Lose (prof. of preaching at Luther Seminary) talk about how singing builds the body of Christ and then as all 1800 of us joined in song.

I thought of you on Tuesday as Walter Brueggeman (the most brilliant Old Testament dude in the world) talked about treasures in clay pots. How too often we care more for the clay pots and not the treasure. That the treasure is forgiveness, generosity, hospitality, and justice–treasure that Guilford Park holds dear.

I thought of you all on Tuesday as Anna Carter Florence (my preaching prof.) talked about living in a parable universe. And isn’t that what we are doing here on this blog?

I thought of you on Tuesday as Barbara Brown Taylor (you should read all of her books!) described what living inside the dark cloud of God looks and feels like. We have all lived in this cloud, so let’s own it and recognize God’s presence there.

I thought of you on Wednesday when Lillian Daniel (prof. of preaching at Yale with the driest sense of witty humor) talked about the “nones” and why they don’t come to church. Much much more on this later.

I thought of you on Wednesday as we listened to Lauren Winner (of the awesome glasses who complimented mine!!) taught us how to use poetic devices in our preaching.

I thought of you on Thursday- oh did I think of you on Thursday- when the Spirit was moving in great abundance through the preaching and lectures of Luke Powery (the most talented word-smith I’ve ever encountered) and Bishop Michael Curry (BJ’s bishop and preacher extraordinaire). I took pages of notes, my hand not able to write fast enough to capture all of their wisdom.

And I’m thinking of you now as I pack up, ready to head to the airport, returning to normal life.

I am full: full of blessings and abundance, full of words that enliven and inspire, full of God’s grace and sustaining love.

I am full.

Jo Owens


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