Saturday, July 19, 2008

July 18, 2008 Wanderings

Greetings everyone. It's Friday. The last day of Little Star VBS. The day before our Block Party.Our Scripture for this Sunday is taken from Romans 8:12-25. It's a letter from Paul that has one of my favorite lines- "For we were not given the spirit of slavery to fall into fear." It also features a theme that I wrote one of my seminary papers about: the groaning of Creation and how, as Paul understands it, Creation and humanity are tied together. When humans sin, the earth suffers. When humans are redeemed, the earth heals. Therefor, the saving acts of Jesus are not just for humans alone, but all things created.Beautiful.Today I wish to take the theme of Creation and share a lesson I was reminded of this week.Many years ago I purchased a plant that does well when it is kept in direct sun. It's an inside plant, so I have tried the best I can to give it that sun, and I guess over the last two years I have taken for granted that it is surviving on my bookshelf facing the sliding door.Well, earlier this week I wanted to try something different. I took the plant and placed it outside on my patio table. It gets shade in the morning, but brilliant, hot, direct sun in the late afternoon. Wouldn't you know it: by the end of day one there was already a new, itty bitty leaf growing. By day two I saw that the leaves were beginning to show stronger reds and yellows in them. By day three, the leaves and stems looked as if they were standing up taller. By today it looks like a completely new, invigorated plant.For the past few years that plant had been hanging on, not getting smaller, but certainly not growing or reaching its full potential. Surviving, was probably the best word to describe what it was doing,Thriving is what it is doing now. And why? Because it was moved. But I did something different. And doing something different made all the difference. It brought new life, new color, new growth.Can I get an "Amen!"Just like this week. For the third year we have being offering Little Star VBS. It has been, by all means, a success, touching the lives of over 20 children over the past two years. This year, Jenny wanted to do something different. Instead of offering it during the day, it was moved to the night. Instead of offering breakfast and lunch, we offered dinner. And instead of just putting up a sign outside, we handed out flyers about it when we canvassed the neighborhood regarding the block party.And the VBS has grown and thrived. Every day we have an abundance of children, and each day a new child arrives. For example, on Monday we had 13 people present, by Wednesday there were 19.We tried something different and it worked. And the children (and as as adults) are growing in Christ, we're filled with new joy and they are really taking to heart what they are learning.I can't help but to wonder what lessons we can learn from this experience. Have we been like my plant, surviving but not reaching our full potential? What will it take for us to branch out, grow new leaves, reclaim our vibrant colors? What changes will it take? And are they changes as simple as the ones involving the plant and VBS?How is God ready to bless us if we allow ourselves better placement in the sun (Son?)Just something to think about.Have a blessed day.Peace, Pastor G

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