Three Week Old Daughter

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Tomorrow my daughter will turn three weeks old. They grow up so fast. Just yesterday I was counting her age in days—on to weeks already! Before I know it we will be counting in months… then years… yikes.

Even with that said, I hardly needed her age to remind me she is getting bigger. Every day she grows and changes. Every day she discovers something new. That is one of the most remarkable things about a baby. Every day their senses fine-tune to the world around them.

            In preschool they teach us the senses.  We can:

  1. See
  2.  Hear
  3.  Touch
  4. Taste
  5. Smell

At the preschool at Hope (the church I pastor) we have this great activity the kids do. Every day one of the children brings home a bag. Overnight they are supposed to fill it with an item. The next day all of the children gather around the bag to discover what’s inside. They take it out, and they feel it. They stand back, and look at it. They listen to see if it makes noise. They taste it (relax, only if it’s edible!). They give it a whiff, and see what it smells like. They have to use all five of their senses to discover what the object is. They use their senses to tell them things.

In the early days of the church, in those first decades after Christ died and rose, the church struggled with waiting for Jesus, settling in, and trying to survive. In the midst of their struggles this guy named John wrote them three letters. Each letter is jam-packed with words of assurance, a message of love, and the good news of Jesus. But before John starts, first he tells them how he knows everything he is about to write (1 John 1:1-4—read it!).

He has seen it with own eyes.

Heard it with his own ears.

Touched hit with own hands.

God has given us senses for more reasons than to taste chocolate cake or listen to Coldplay. God has given us senses to know him.

Eyes to see what he is doing.

Ears to hear him whisper, “I love you.”

Touch to feel a warm embrace.

I will always remember the day last week when my daughter, Quinn, clearly heard my voice. I will not soon forget the way her dazzling (and ever-changing) eyes catch sight of me. I don’t even care if I never forget the way her diapers smell. With each of her senses she is getting to know her father, and I love it.

I, for one, can’t help but think our God feels the same way. May we use your senses to experience our God today and always.

Amen

 

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Pastor Shawn Hannon
Pastor Shawn is a 2010 graduate of the Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary in Columbia, South Carolina, and he began his call at Hope Lutheran Church, Arcade NY that summer. While he spent four years learning and serving churches in South and North Carolina, as a Jamestown, NY native, Western New York has always been home. He is glad to be here. Pastor Shawn and his wife Carol Hannon met while attending SUNY Geneseo in the mid-2000s. They have enjoyed making their home together in Arcade with their daughters Quinn and Perry.   Pastor Shawn has a background in youth and outdoor ministry. He is a former camper and staff person at Lake Chautauqua Lutheran Center in Bemus Point, NY. He has also served camps in urban settings and oversees in Madagascar. In seminary he was recognized for gifts in Greek and New Testament, and in his senior year was recognized with awards in both Preaching and Biblical Studies. Pastor Shawn continues to emphasize the youth in his ministry, but not simply because they are the future church, but because they are the church of today.  He also enjoys working on service projects, and takes the role of planning meaningful and engaging worship seriously.  He loves helping people find ways to put their passion and energy to work making their community and other people’s worlds a better place. When he is not working at church, Shawn enjoys remodeling and construction projects around his family’s home.  But as busy as he gets, PS always has time for a quick nine (okay, 18) on the golf course. He enjoys playing sports of all kinds and fiddling with his guitar.