Monday, August 13, 2007

Signs of New Life

Yesterday was a full day. It was a day to worship, a day to offer thanksgiving, a day to celebrate a life that was beautiful and often filled with joy, and a day to grieve a life that ended too soon. As I was leaving the church yesterday, I was both exhausted and overwhelmed.

As I walked to my car, I stopped and looked again at the progress being made on the church building. Large pieces of machinery are digging a big hole. Different types of underground tubes are being installed. The inside of the historic church is down to a shell, as they start to rebuild and renovate the inside. The place looks like a mess.

Still, it is filled with hope.

Something is happening here!

A glorious, historic church building is being restored while the foundation for a new office building is being prepared. Inside the office building the church will have a beautiful fellowship hall, a nursery for our children, classrooms for our adults, a great lounge in which to hangout or watch a movie, a kitchen where meals can be prepared for hundreds of people, and beautiful office space where work can be done.

There is so much promise in the mess. There is so much potential. Still, we have to wait a while for the potential to be realized. We have to wait months to get back into the historic church and two years to get into the new building.

When I got home, I parked across the street from where I live. Getting out of my car, I noticed amazing flowers that I have not noticed before. I am not sure how I have missed them as they are huge.

Many different kinds of sunflowers have been planted at a charter school. There are small sunflowers and huge sunflowers. In fact, some of them are the biggest sunflowers I have ever seen. There was such a sense of creation and recreation in these flowers. These flowers are a clear and tangible sign of God's creative hand that is always at work in our lives.

A 1917 building is being renovated from top to bottom. Old buildings have been torn down so that something new may emerge. Extensive excavation is being done so that a foundation can be laid and a building emerge on top of it. Flowers shout out on a street where not everything is perfect.

New life is all around us! Signs of something about to spring forth are in our midst.

And I am reminded of a hymn that is in the United Methodist Hymnal called "Hymn of Promise." The words of the hymn by Natalie Sleeth read:
"In the bulb there is a flower, in the seed, an apple tree, in cocoons, a hidden promise, butterflies will soon be free! In the cold and snow of winter there's a spring that waits to be, unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.
There's a song in every silence, seeking word and melody, there's a dawn in every darkness, bringing hope to you and me. From the past will come the future; what it holds, a mystery, unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.
In our end is our beginning, in our time, infinity, in our doubt there is believing; in our life, eternity. In our death, a resurrection; at the last, a victory, unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see."


No comments: