The earth is waking up. I see it in the little green shoots by the front stoop, hear it in the singing chickadees. Smell it in the piles of composting leaves, the ice and mud along the trail. Yes, know it in my sneezing through this change of season. Something is in the air. The earth is waking up.
And yes, around town see this awakening in the smiles and sparkling of those who are receiving their vaccinations. Hear it in the sound of their stories – tears of gratitude, the lifting of a weight they didn’t even know they were carrying.
It’s been a long winter.
It’s been a long Lent since last year when we turned from worshipping in person to connecting with each other in ways we never could have imagined – in live-stream worship and zoom meetings and conversations. Our community has grown and changed through the challenges.
This Lent, as I’ve been pondering and wondering on the healing ministry of Jesus with you, I have felt more viscerally than I have before how much we need this healing, how much we long for it. And so, what a good time for Easter to come – a reminder, a sign, an ancient story and present celebration that we are getting there, we are finding our way through. That out of the loss of what was, a new and unexpected life is rising.
Our Easter celebrations this year reflect our experience of the awakening this spring. The earth is waking up, the world is opening up to a new day. And yes, we’re not quite at all the ways we long to be quite yet. Some of us will gather in-person for our Sunrise Service. Others of us will tune-in on line. Many of us will take part in live-stream Easter morning service at 10 am. Plans are being made for more public worship opportunities in the months ahead.
I smile as I think back on where we were last year. If you had told me that we would we gathering for worship on-line for the next year, that we would be gathering for Bible Studies, Support Groups, Conversations and Committee Meetings on zoom, I might well have argued with you about what a bad idea that was! But this year changed me. It changed us. I’ve experienced the wonder of the church growing in such miraculous, unbelievable ways as we’ve made connections with people that never could have taken part before in the church’s ministry. I witness the church getting bigger, its imagination growing.
This new world we rise into will need our imaginations, our wonder, our prayers for possibility. And the good news is, we don’t have to figure it all out alone. Together with the Spirit of the Living God around us, within us, among us, it is already happening, the earth is waking up. Let us give ourselves to the slow turning and awakening of the world and take in the wonder of it all.