Whenever times are difficult I use the image of a little boat. I have a little boat and it can only carry so much. It can carry me, my little family, my healing or my grieving. It can carry the pain of another. It can’t hold guilt, or excessive responsibility, or stupid stuff. I share this image often, so often that I keep little boats to share with people. Recently a friend said she has the image of all of us in our little boats, sometimes we come alongside each other and encourage each other, sometimes we are alone.

This week I take my little boat to Annual Conference where all of the rest of the little boats, and bigger ones, will gather. This week I will listen to ordinary things like budgets and extraordinary things like giving birth to a new Methodist movement. My boat holds grace, hope, and some grief. Maybe it will get a bit bigger to hold something more. What I know is that my boat, all of our boats, are held on the sea of God’s grace.