I will be spending the next few weeks serving as Auxiliary Pastor for a rural church community in Rehoboth, (Rehoboth Congregational Church, UCC) while their awesome Senior Pastor, is away on sabbatical. In reflecting upon the Summer Worship Series of “Why I Come to Church”, I had the opportunity to also spend some moments reflecting on how church helps folks to “recharge”. I have discovered that worship plays a role in re-centering our focus for the journey on many levels.
I have also re-discovered that there is a beautiful momentum found in the gathering of people together in Christ’s name. A momentum that serves as the primary source of healing and love . It is in this gathering together that we are made most aware of the presence and work of God’s Holy Spirit among and through us. It is through one another, on the most simple levels — that God reminds us what a blessing it is to simply be a blessing to another.
In turn, I was reminded of a blog post I had written a few years back for a blog called Signature Moms (https://signaturemoms.com/) tilted, “Taking Time to Smell the Roses”. Signature Mom’s blog, is a great resource for parents that shares stories about parenting, health and wellness. I shared this in the weekly newsletter for RCC. I would also like to share some of this post with you.
My youngest son’s little hand holds tight to the carriage and his big blue eyes look up at me from his hat-hidden face. We are in a rush. We need to leave the supermarket in time to pick up his oldest sister from camp and the clock is ticking. With his well-worn red sox cap covering part of his face and half of one eye, he peers up at me and smiles thoughtfully.
And I barely notice.
“Mom?” his little voice asks. I hear him, but I am focused on maneuvering our shopping carriage and ourselves through an unusually busy parking lot.
I am unable to answer.
“Mom!!?” he says with a little more force. I stop and realize that my youngest child has planted his feet firmly on the ground. He is not moving. The shopping carriage and I come to an abrupt halt. I scoop him up in one arm and attempt to rush towards the car while pushing the shopping carriage with the other.
“MOM! Will you stop and look at THIS. You’re going to miss it?!?” He shouts in my ear as he slips free of my hold and points over to a puddle on the ground.
With reluctance, I sigh and leave my unattended cart of groceries in the middle of the parking lot as I take my youngest child’s hand. As I shook my head to clear my thoughts, I realized that my son had gently led me back over to the puddle he had been so focused on showing me.
“Do you see it Mom?” he asked me gently.
I saw a puddle…
I saw that my phone had two voice messages. I saw that the wind was now pushing my grocery filled shopping cart slowly through the parking lot. I saw the minutes ticking away. I saw that I had to get going.
“Look Mom. Isn’t that beautiful?” he asks while simultaneously pulling me closer to the puddle – breaking my train of thought – bringing me into a moment into which I had permission to take pause – and breathe..
Then I saw it.
I should have known. My youngest is my one who always stops to smell the roses. He always sees the things we don’t have time to notice and he pays attention to the little details. He is always the first to see a hummingbird in the garden or a deer in the woods. He never misses a firefly and always seems to notice when I feel sad. Today would be no different and I was disappointed that I had not stopped sooner.
As I looked into the puddle, I saw the reflection of slowly moving, perfectly white clouds positioned against an indigo blue sky on a silky smooth canvas. And while I squatted down next to my sweet child admiring this precious discovery, all those other previous worries faded slowly out of my mind.
“It’s just beautiful,” my son repeated as he leaned his little body into mine. And it was.
Such wisdom shared by one so small.
Such unexpected extraordinary on a day so ordinary…
As we peered into the puddle together I could also see the reflection of a mother and son, stopping just for a moment, time standing still amidst the hustle and bustle of life to take in some simple beauty. A sacred opportunity to see through the eyes of someone else – someone who loves me. Someone who stopped long enough to help me to see a glimpse of God amidst it all. The sacred in the ordinary.
I believe this is how God works in our lives. It is through the presence of others –the work of the Holy Spirit speaking through those around us – that we are reminded of the importance of seeking out those moments that inspire and refuel us. Those minuscule, often unnoticed moments that present themselves over and over again – so that we might know healing and love.
“Why we come to church?” summer series is a 12 week series. Focused on themes provided to us by the members of the congregation themselves. This weeks theme is focused and titled: “Recharge”. The theme will reflect upon how God is at work in our lives — through our “gatherings”, through presence, through one another… We gather at church, to worship, to give thanks, to learn, to heal and to recharge. We come to church, so that in the noise, the confusion, and in the struggles of the day to day — we are reminded to take pause– so we might experience the holy….
I invite you to reflect upon the ways in which being part of a faith filled community has inspired or reinvigorated you and helps you to see things through a different lens. How is the Holy Spirit working in and around you – inspiring you and strengthening you for the journey ahead?