Southpoint News July 24, 2018
We’re back at Sunnyside this week!
Regular start time of 10:00 AM
It’s All Grace
I walked through my first spider web in the woods yesterday. Usually they begin to appear in August, these thin invisible filaments connecting tree and branch and leaf. By September they are so thick I walk through the woods with a stick and wave it in front of my face like a crazy lady to avoid being face-planted by a spider.
I thought today of Murray. Sitting by his side in his final days, listening to him talk about these thin filaments of silver, flashes of light, that crisscross and connected everything. He could see them, right before him. He would try so hard to share these glimpses he’d been given, these flashes of silver, these bursts of light. “It’s all grace,” he’d say, sometimes with awe, sometimes with exultation, “It’s all grace!“. It seemed he was experiencing God’s grace as these tiny strands of silver, these wisps of light, connecting everything. “It’s all grace!”
In his living right before dying, he saw things I could not see, and he felt compelled by gratitude to share them so I might see them too. His words, spoken at the end of life, were a uniquely personal, poignantly appropriate revelation of Divine Love. At the end of the day, there is grace.
We have been teasing this theme of Divine Love all the way since Lent. Do you remember?
Way back when the days were grey and cold and the rain seemed to go on forever, we looked at Jesus and how he revealed to us the Love of God, a love that drew near, cleansed, saved, suffered, held fast and forgave. We looked more closely during Easter at this revelation of Divine Love in Christ, and how the cross, empty tomb, and all those post-resurrection accounts revealed just how radical this Divine Love for us is. And then it was Pentecost. The Spirit came down, filling the disciples to the brim, and they became the new revealers of Divine Love. As they shared what they had seen in Jesus, they mirrored what Jesus had done. They revealed Divine Love. Over the summer, we lingered in Corinthians, and saw how this revelation of Divine Love which we now are invited to partake in is not dependent on our strength, or on our prowess, or even on our skill. In our weakness God’s revelation appears.
And so now it is our turn to speak: What is your uniquely personal, poignantly appropriate revelation of Divine Love? Or, in the words of our friend Mel, writing in an email today about the question he asks his AA friends, “Who is God to you?”
When have you felt the sliver threads of grace land upon your face?
When have you sensed the mystery of God, connecting seemingly random points in time into an intricate web of presence?
When have you been walking down a path and unexpectedly felt that first brush of something unseen?
For the rest of the summer, we have the joy of witnessing the revelation of Divine Love in one another’s stories. Each week of summer, someone else from within our church will share their own brushes with grace. I hope you can make it. I think it will be rich.
Peace and joy,
Invitation from the Goode’s: The Goode’s will be hosting a Harry Potter themed party on Sunday July 29 at Redwood Park. 12 pm to 3 pm. Everyone is welcome, under the trees in the upper park. Bring a picnic lunch, a broom and a red or green shirt or scarf. (So you can be on Gryffindor or Slytherin for quidditch.). We will provide equipment for quidditch and a Harry Potter birthday cake to share, along with some trivia. Please note this is not “athletic” quidditch, but run-around-looking-like-an-idiot-and-laughing-quidditch. Open to all. Even if you want to just come and watch.
We’re back at Sunnyside this week! Regular start time of 10:00. We’ll have our usual kids groups, but no coffee time – so bring your own drinks! Anne will be away at a family reunion. Come hear Andrew Sawatsky, our first summer storyteller.