Reflection presented as part of Tertulia 2013.  Tertulia 2013 is Council for Hispanic Ministries-New England Regions 2nd annual meeting.  This year we decided to continue our intimate, transparent, open and honest discussion among our Latino/Hispanic leaders and friends about Sexism, Classism, Racism and ONA issues as it relates to this year’s theme: Authentic, Accountability and Actualization.  It is our hope that this Tertulia helps us enhance our understanding of what it means to be UCC amidst our rich cultural and theological diversities; and helps us engage in a discussion about the paradigm shift in our society and within our region.   What does it mean to be in covenant with each other in CHRIST’s love and embrace our denomination’s Transformative Statement of Faith in a God Still Speaks world?

Bible Verse: Psalm 139:14-16

REFLECTION Geppetto the woodcarver sat down and made a lifelike marionette, that he named Pinocchio. Much like the velveteen rabbit, this marionette was loved and appreciated. Pinocchio’s origins were never questioned or doubted, after all Geppetto made him and new every detail.

Our creator formed us and knows us…intimately. The parts of our story we try to keep hidden and the parts that we brag about. Why pretend that we are perfect, or all the same? God made us just as we are, warts and all! “My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made…Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them…” The church is not the place to leave parts of you at the door, those parts of you that you make pretty to bring to the church are usually the very parts of you that need to be renewed by our merciful creator.

Imagine if we each would walk into church this Sunday like broken marionettes, with strings that are frayed, showing the world around us that we also struggle and are imperfect. Showing the world that our reason for going to church on Sunday is to be uplifted, to have our strings reset by God. God loves us as we are, in all our imperfections. And change, if it is needed or necessary, comes through and from the love of a merciful God. Not from the shedding of our issues!

PRAYER Thank you Lord for loving my authentic self. For making my imperfect true self just as it is, and for helping me transition into a better me, picking me up when I fall and soothing my wounds, but always loving me, just as I am. Amen.