“90’s Club”

We have a “90’s Club” at Forest Hill: a select group of wise, spirited, and sometimes feisty women and one man who have reached the incredible age of 90+ years. There’s six all together, five of whom show up just about every Sunday to worship, fellowship and keep us on our toes. I jokingly say that Forest Hill has discovered the fountain of youth – they’re just not sharing its location with me – because I have to say they are some of the youngest people I know. They are full of life and spirit and energy and they love to worship. And not just in the old “we’ve always done it this way” kind of way. They take their faith seriously but not so much their own personal agendas. They seem to have arrived at a place where they’re willing and able to be open to the new and different while honoring and giving thanks for the ways that have shaped and formed their lives. I know they love the old hymns that they grew up with but I’ve also seen them tapping their feet to a new beat or lifting their hands in prayer and praise just about every time Brandon introduces a new style of music in worship. This last week it was the Blues and every body, most especially our 90’s Club, loved it!

Last summer we had a big party for these special people. Members of our congregation volunteered to interview each of our “90’s Club” members and we made a video of them sharing their wisdom, a bit about their faith journey and how and why the church has been important in their lives. They also got to share what they would most like us to know from the wisdom of their lived experience and we were truly blown away by their responses. We laughed and cried, ate a great meal, listened to wonderful stories of faith and family and the changing world in which we live and gave thanks to God for this special group of “saints” among us. We were all a little richer, and hopefully wiser, as the day grew to a close. They reminded us that day, and every day since, to be faithful to our God and to the Way of Jesus, to appreciate our lives, to value our family and the friends that walk with us, to commit our lives to something bigger than ourselves, to live with integrity and to value work – almost every one of them told us “hard work never hurt any one!” And they should know, they’re some of the hardest workers I have ever known.

In Jeremiah 6:16 we hear: “Thus says the Lord: Stand at the crossroads, and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way lies; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls.” As our congregation stands at the crossroads and seeks the way God would have us walk, we know we are blessed by the presence, the wisdom and the faithfulness of our “90’s Club.” Their spiritual depth and faithful living challenges and encourages us to grow in faith and spiritual maturity. Their openness to life and worship and new perspectives is not only a breath of fresh air in a world that sometimes insists there’s only one “right” way but an invitation to each of us to experience God’s creativity and diversity with appreciation and wonder as we journey together. And did I mention, they’re a lot of fun to be around?!

Blessings, Susan

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