February 16 Reflections

Thornton Wilder wrote a classic play called, Our Town.  Written in 1938 it is a fictional story of an American small town called Grover’s Corners. The story is about everyday life in its mundane and glorious beauty. In the story a character named Emily dies at age 26 and is able to come back for a visit as a spirit where no one can see her, but she can see everyone else. The frustration is that no one on earth can see the beauty of day to day living. “Does anyone ever realize life while they live it?” Do I realize life while I live it, every second? Or do I just go through the motions? God has given the gift of each moment.  So often I have mindlessly just gone through 100 motions in the day without being mindful of each moment, literally each breath. One of the areas of growth for me is to slow down and be attentive to each moment.

I also have come to realize that God is writing a story with each of our lives in those moment by moment details. Every one of our lives is unique and is an invaluable story. This week the young people are going to lead us into the adventure of thinking about how we live our lives with the cards we are dealt. The cards we are dealt in life tell a story. Some of the cards are delightful, some are hurtful. The thing that has brought me hope in the midst of knowing my own complete story is God’s story. God’s story of grace, hope and love speaks into my story. A piece of my story is shame. Growing up believing I was never enough. Incidents of being laughed at for economic status or abilities in the area of sports, academics and music. These painful incidents are part of my story. Yet, God’s story comes alongside, overlaps mine and tells me a whole different story. I am his child. He loves me. He delights in me.

I want to slow down and be attentive to every moment of my life, because God is writing a pretty incredible story. I want to see the moon and stars in the morning. I want to see the sun rise and set. I want to notice the clouds and the breeze in my face. I want to see the trees, the deer, even the rabbits and squirrels. I want to see people, not just pass them by. I want to enter deeply into the ache of life, and the joy of living. I pray that I can be mindful, not mindless in the face of the beauty of being alive. All of this is possible because I know underneath, around, within it all is Abba who loves me. This is the only way I know to make sense of the cards I am dealt. We are going to think about this on Sunday as the youth lead us. Some passages for reflection: Romans8:26-28; Genesis 50:15-21; Romans 8:35-39; Matthew 3:13-17.

Grace upon Grace,

Pastor Verlyn