Week 2: Love is in the Quiet Moments

Love is in the Quiet Moments

By D.J. Chatelaine

I love to keep myself busy. From training for and running three marathons to cooking and baking or making music in my “downtime,” in addition to working and pursuing my other passions and curiosities, I do without ceasing. Scheduling my days around eating, sleeping, working and these hobbies, I find that I can thrive for a time in this fast-paced, demanding routine I self-impose. But also, I find that when I burn out, it usually involves extreme fatigue, some sort of cold or injury and little to no desire to do anymore or anything else. Although I’m still figuring out the balance in my life, I find the times that I’m still--that is, the times I pause and rest--are most life giving.

One of my favorite places to be still is in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota. I’ve been just about every other year since I was 12 years old, and even though it’s a bit challenging to be in the wilderness for a week at a time, having to carry everything you need--food, clothes, shelter, cookware--with you over rugged trails and paddling through choppy waters, the time I’ve spent there has been some of the most life giving. For it is in the moments of stillness, where there’s nothing to do besides laying on a sun-soaked rock, listening to the loons calling, the wind blowing through the mighty branches of ancient trees and seeing islands of trees rise out of the sky blue waters, that I feel at peace--one with God, nature and everything around me. The worries of the outside world and my life leave me for this moment in time and I can fully be present in creation and my being.

Moments like these are meant to be temporary and shouldn’t last forever, as the work we are called to do is important and life giving in its own way. Yet at the same time, these moments of stillness and solitude reflect a great love. A love that helps me renew, reset and recharge for what’s to come once I leave the Boundary Waters. Where is your Boundary Waters experience? Where is your moment or place of stillnes? Perhaps it’s on a beach, or at home, or in a forest, or with those you love. In this Lenten season, take the time to practice or simply remember those moments of stillness. For it is in that very stillness that love shows up.

Time to Chat

Car conversations for me growing up were some of the richest moments I had with my parents and sisters. From checking in on each others’ days to my dad and I listening to music on the way to school every day, this time together was a chance to reset for the day to come or decompress from the day that was. How can these moments of detachment and time together offer an opportunity for you and your family to check-in and talk about where you’ve found stillness today?

Challenge and Activities

Teens and Adults: Julie Stevens, our Director of Contemplative Practices, has assembled a Lenten Mindfulness Meditation Challenge. I’ve used this moment of stillness to center myself for the many tasks and events to come each day. Mindfulness makes every moment feel that much more full, intentional, present and meaningful. If you haven’t already, your challenge for this week is to find a time—perhaps in the car, at the breakfast/dinner table or right before bed—to go through one of Julie’s 5-7 minute meditations. Here’s a link to the mindfulness challenge.

Children and Families: How do you build quiet time into your day? Do the kids read or have screen time to instill some quiet? Maybe they quietly play on their own. This week, try something new: quiet circle time! Sit on the floor, chairs, or around the table in a circle as a family. Challenge yourselves to 1-2 minutes (or more if you want) of quiet breathing together. Sit comfortably, play some quiet music (google “yoga music” for options), close your eyes, and be still for those 1-2 minutes. Doing this together is a fun way to challenge each other for a quiet moment as well as build a bonding moment in breathing and being mindfully centered together.

Week 1: Love in Lent

Love is a verb.

There are three types of love: philos, eros, agape.

As families, we are familiar with philos, family love, brotherly love, friendship. Philos is that shared admiration for those who accompany us through life. Those with which we spend time.

Eros is romantic love. It is rooted in the strong way we feel around those to whom we are attracted.

Agape is unconditional love. This love is not based on merit of the person loved, but rather unconditional and based on them as an image bearer of Christ. This love is kind and generous. It continues to give even when the other is unkind, unresponsive and unworthy. It only desires good things for the other and is compassionate. [Huffington Post]

Love, especially agape love, is going to be our focus throughout Lent. Every week we will have a new blog post sharing about another way to consider love in this Lenten journey. So bring the family together and get ready to share stories, activities, and conversation about how we express, experience, grow, and learn in love.

Time to Chat

Where do you experience love? Who shows you love? How do they do that?


Photo Challenge

Where are you experiencing love? How does it show up in your day? Love is shown in many ways. It was seen in random acts of kindness this past week with people coming together to clear snow! Perhaps you have experienced it in someone sharing a kind word, or a memento of a loved one reminding you of a love you can experience over and over.

We want to know your stories! Capture love via photo and post it with the hashtag #gloriadeilove to your social media throughout these next weeks of Lent. Let us be mindful to look for love within us and around us every day.

Left: Love is an encouraging note from my sister in the mail! #gloriadeilove

Right: Love is being reunited with my German host brother, Lukas, after four years apart. #gloriadeilove

Vacation Bible School 2019 - ROAR!

Vacation Bible School: June 17-20, 2019

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DETAILS FOR 2019 - ROAR!

Join us as we experience ROAR:  Life is Wild; God is Good!

VBS is open to children who will be ENTERING grades Preschool 2 (4 years old by September 1, 2019) through 5th grade in Fall 2019. Join us for Bible adventure, games, music, imagination station, snack and more!

The Auction- RESCHEDULED for Wed. Feb 27th

You're Invited to
The Auction: a Gloria Dei Youth Fundraiser!
Wednesday, February 27th, 5-9pm

Please join us for an evening of community celebration and connection while investing in our youth as they travel together on Gloria Dei youth trips. As the only fundraising effort to support these trips, proceeds from this year's auction will fund, in-part, the Middle School Mission Trip to Milwaukee, WI and the High School Trip to Rainbow Trail in Colorado.

These youth trips not only provide a way for students to connect with God on a deeper level, but to also form life-long relationships with their peers and adult mentors from Gloria Dei.

There will be concessions and free childcare. Our goal is to raise $19,500 for our youth!

Cross Path Sunday

Cross Path Sunday

March 3, 2019 at 10:00a.m.-10:45a.m.

Sunday School will be held in the Fireside Room and Garden Lounge. Parents, please accompany your children.

You’re invited to Cross Path Sunday! We believe in community here at Gloria Dei! You are a part of this fantastic community and Cross Path Sunday is an event that offers many ways to get to know each other. Whether you enjoy coffee and conversation, board games, creative projects, snacks…we have something for everyone!

All ages will come together for fun, fellowship, and community. We are a community of many. Cross Path Sunday is a time where we focus on building community. Get to know someone new. Enjoy the awesome people here at Gloria Dei. Where all are welcome and we meet you where you are.

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All the Feels- by Krista

All the Feels

by Krista Monson

My mother said something to me when I was young that has stuck with me for decades. “Emotions are valid. It’s your attitude that is your choice.”

She constantly reminded me, and still reminds me today, that there is nothing wrong with feeling angry, frustrated, sad, upset, jealous, or disappointed. Those are emotions. Feelings. Every single one is completely natural. The choice we have is what we do with those emotions; especially when interacting with others. As a child, when I chose harsh words and actions towards my siblings to reflect my feelings, I was rewarded with a time out. Time to reconsider my attitude and actions. Time to take a break, breathe, and make a new choice.

Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry…” James 1:19b

Decades later, I still practice choosing my attitude amidst days of emotions. A common phrase a friend and I use is “All the Feels” to express how overwhelmed we can be by the sheer number of emotions we experience in a day. It can be tiring. It can leave us not knowing how to proceed. I take comfort in the reminder that emotions are valid and I can take a time out to breathe, pray for patience and guidance, and consider my attitude and how I interact with the world.

GDYG Ski Retreat

Welch Village Ski Retreat for high schoolers and their families!

Saturday, February 2nd from 3pm-11pm.

We will depart church at 3pm on February 2nd and return that night around 11pm, giving us six hours of ski time! Welch Village has a variety of ski trails, ranging in difficulty from beginner to expert, so there’s something for everyone, whether you’ve skied before or not. They also have a special rate on Saturday nights for groups of 15 or more, so invite your friends. Hope you can join us!

Cost is $60 with rental or $40 if you have your own equipment. This includes lift tickets (6 hours of skiiing/snowboarding!!) & transportation to and from Welch Village. Either pack a dinner or bring money for food. Email D.J. at djc@gloria-dei.com if you need scholarship assistance.

Registration and sign up is CLOSED for this event. If you didn’t get the chance, look for an opportunity next winter!

Grades 9-12.

Summer Camp at Good Earth Village!

Summer Camp at Good Earth Village!

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Summer Camp registration is open at Good Earth Village! Super Early Bird discount is 15% until February 3rd, 11:59PM. Details for dates, programs, costs, and more are available at www.goodearthvillage.org/summer. Gift certificates are available at www.goodearthvillage.org/giftofcamp, or by calling 507-346-2494.

$50 Gloria Dei scholarships are available for week long registrations. Contact Krista at kristam@gloria-dei.com with any questions.


Stars- by D.J.

Stars

By D.J. Chatelaine

Many of my earliest memories are as a two-year-old, head always looking up. Because I was a sapling amidst a forest of family members, as the youngest, I naturally had to look up to my mom, my dad and my sisters. I don’t know if all that skyward gazing made my neck sore, but what I do remember is being transfixed by what was going on in the sky: vibrant rainbows that came after tremendous thunderstorms, clouds wispy like frosting and others that looked like mountains towering over the Minnesota plains, orange sunrises and purple sunsets, a sky full of stars on a crisp winter evening.

Winter nights can be difficult: seemingly dark and endless, it makes our troubles, worries and sorrows that much greater. I can think of many nights where all lights go out in a sea of ink. We can get easily lost and wonder if the sun even exists. Yet, you look up and see a single star shining in the night sky. Like that star, each one of us reflects God’s beauty through our individual inner lights: your personality, your passions, your gifts. When we bring those individual lights together as a community, something amazing happens: our sky is lit up by endless stars, a sky so light that we wonder if the night is real. This New Year, hold onto that inner light and share it with the world around you: your friends, your family, your peers, your co-workers, people you love, people you don’t. Let’s be a sky full of stars.