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Celebrate every pin (January Newsletter Pastor's note)

Updated: Jan 24, 2022

We recently went duck pin bowling at Ruby’s Arcade. We love Ruby’s, but don’t usually go bowling there, and we certainly haven’t been since BC (Before COVID). Micah, especially, was begging for us to go bowling, and finally when the rest of our family arrived, we got set up on a couple of lanes. The boys were bowling pretty much nonstop, and it was such a joy-filled time!

We decided not to keep score, and treated one of the lanes pretty communally - Isaac might bowl, then Micah, and they’d keep trying to knock down remaining pins until someone finally hit the reset button. I was surprised at how many good rolls the boys had, at least in direction. A little more heft would have knocked down more pins, but that didn’t really matter.

We started celebrating when more than a few pins got knocked down - high fives all around, hands in the air, cheering each other on. Micah showed me one of his techniques (between the legs), and I got a strike using it! He also was really encouraging to everyone else.

By the end of the evening, it got to the point where we were celebrating the fall of even a single pin. And why not? We have all be through so. Many. Things. We could have been disappointed with our efforts in any number of ways, but instead, we celebrated every single pin.

I’ve never been more than a fair bowler, and yet for some reason, each time I step up to that line, if I don’t get a strike or spare, it feels like a disappointment or failure. That’s ridiculous! The past few years have taught me a lot about the importance of adjusting expectations. They’ve also shown just how important it is to have the support of a loving community.

Life is hard enough without carrying the weight of unreasonable expectations - for ourselves and for others. If we’re going to make it through together, I think we need to start celebrating every pin. Cheering on each person, offering support and encouragement, even when the balls keep ending up in the gutter. Because eventually, a pin will fall.

I want 2022 to be the year of celebrating every single pin. More joy. More grace. More encouragement. More community. More love.

Grace and Peace,


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