Nobody does a hymn like Sufjan Stevens.
Tonight I sat in my office and wrote out my spiritual story. The first step in our version of the discernment process is to be granted a local minister’s license by the church board, and tonight was my night to address the board and request a license. Knowing that I’d be asked to share over 40 years of life on pilgrimage and to articulate my somewhat meandering sense of calling (preferably in less than five minutes) was a bit daunting, even among friends. It was a moment that called for inspiration, and here’s where I found mine.
If there is a one line summary of my life with God, it’s captured in this one phrase from “Come Thou Fount”: “O to grace how great a debtor”. To mentally review the course my life has taken is to be reminded again and again of the grace that has been lavished on me. Why? Why did Jesus seek me “when a stranger/wandering from the fold of God?” Why was He willing to “rescue me from danger” when I was the one who got myself there in the first place? I don’t get it. I don’t understand the grace that sought me years ago and I don’t understand the grace that is calling me in a new direction now. But, dear God, I’m grateful for it. So I sat in my office and typed, and sang along with Sufjan. Because “streams of mercy never ceasing/call for songs of loudest praise.”