Lent: Living the Questions (4) Glory

A parched afternoon in the desert.

Theresa wrote this beautiful piece in response to Sunday’s sermon. With her permission, I offer this slightly shortened version to you as our blog this week. Enjoy the lyricism of her words!

— Anne

“Glory is the unfolding of God’s loving character”—I cut my spiritual canines on this phrase. It was my pastor’s favourite and it has urged me to seek this great unfolding on the journey of life.

What glory to witness—and sometimes even midwife—souls take their first heart-stopping breaths of freedom and love. 

What glory to experience the Spirit move mysteriously and powerfully  in worship, bringing healing and encouragement to people in weary, seemingly hopeless places.

What glory to see God’s loving character unfolding in the small beauty of spring birds, awakening me to the life that warmth and sunshine will bring to the seeds hidden in seeming death underground, reminding me that death does not have the final say. 

What glory to relish the uninhibited joy of a toddler, reveling in first steps towards loving parents. 

What glory to hear the soothing yet oh-so-powerful waves of the ocean as they murmur and boom along the shoreline.

What glory to linger with loved ones over a shared meal and shared lives, hearts full of gratitude and satisfaction.

Hearing again the story of the blind man healed by Jesus this Sunday, I had a covid-induced shudder thinking of spit and dirt rubbed into my eyes. Such a social taboo these days, and I suspect it broke a wide range of traditional and societal norms in those times, too.

What of this blind man? Having lived the misery of judgment, poverty, disability, and shunning his whole life, he knew nothing of the beauty of the world around him. For him, the world must have seemed an unsafe, unpredictable habitation, never knowing what obstacle, be it physical or societal, would be in his path.

And then—the unfolding of God’s loving character shining on him and cracking him open to everything around him. What wonder! What joy! What jubilation! A wonder not shared by those around him, who first doubted this glorious unfolding, and then distanced themselves from him and his miracle.

Jesus was not the first person he saw when his sight was restored. Obeying Jesus, he journeyed to the pool of Siloam to wash the filthy mud out of his eyes. What would it be like to see forms, colours, faces, suddenly take shape? To see the people and animals he had only known by sound reveal themselves in their humanity and beauty?

And then, on the very heels of that, to have to explain, over and over again, what had happened to him, both to those who knew him intimately, and to those who did not, only to be met with disbelief and distrust. “All I know is that I was blind and now I can see.”

I wonder, what it was like for him to look eye to eye with the man who had healed him. To be able to see Jesus, to commit to memory all the lines and planes of that face.

I wonder, what was it like to be seen by Jesus? To see welcome, recognition, acceptance, and love in those eyes. Vision goes both ways.

Is that also an unfolding of God’s loving character? I can’t help but think so. And what unspeakable glory there is in that.

— Theresa Fryer 

Worship Calendar

Location & Zoom. We meet on Sundays at 15639 24 Avenue, Surrey. Zoom is offered if you cannot attend in person. Zoom link. Meeting ID: 831 1690 9977 password: 753319

Listen to Sermons
Follow “Meditations from the Church at Southpoint” on SpotifyApple and Google

Blogs
Catch up on Anne’s recent blogs under “News” on our website, southpoint.ca

Sun Feb 18 
(1) Jesus Sought Me
Rev Anne Baxter Smith
Luke 5: 1-11

Sun Feb 25  Brunches
All OUT—No service at Sunnyside

Sun Mar 3
(2) Praise the Mount
Rev Anne Baxter Smith
Matt 16:13-20

Sun Mar 10
(3) I’m Fixed Upon It
Rev Anne Baxter Smith
Matt 16: 21-23

Sun Mar 17
(4) Teach Me
Rev Anne Baxter Smith
Matt 18: 15-22

Sun Mar 24 Palm Sunday All IN
& Potluck Lunch
(5) Songs of Loudest Praise
Rev Anne Baxter Smith
John 12:12-16

Sun Mar 31 Easter
(1) And I Hope
Rev Anne Baxter Smith
Luke 24: 1-12

Sun Apr 7
(2) Here’s My Heart
Rev Anne Baxter Smith
John 21: 1-19

New to Southpoint?

At Southpoint, it all begins with God’s love. Just as a plant grows, it receives sunshine, so we grow as we receive God’s love. At Southpoint, we are growing in our capacity to love God, ourselves, one another, and creation.

We seek to be a community of grace that is intentional yet organic, spacious yet authentic, grace-filled yet accountable. * We are fully welcoming. *

We encourage relationships rather than run programs, yet we recognize the importance of intentionality and structure as we nurture life together.

As a community, we seek to put our love in action. We value helping out on Sunday mornings, sharing food, and showing up in hard times. We keep our church life simple so folk have time to build relationships with family, friends, and neighbours. We encourage folk to serve in tangible ways within the wider community. We rent space rather than own a building, allowing us to do more with less, supporting missions at home and abroad.

Curious to know more?

These six slides express what motivates our ministry (best viewed on a monitor). Here’s the bio of our Pastor, Rev. Anne Baxter Smith.

If you’d like to really peek inside, sign up for our weekly Southpoint News (scroll to brown footer at bottom of page). The Southpoint News is a MailChimp distributed email—you can unsubscribe anytime and will not be added to our contacts list. Email us at office@southpoint.ca. Website: southpoint.ca.

Progress Pride Flag by Daniel Quasar (link)

Sun Apr 2 Palm SundayCan I Trust This?
Matt 21:1-11

Readings for Maundy Thursday
Will I Let You In?
John 13:1-17, 31b-35

Good Friday Stations of the Cross 
512 172 Street, 10 am -12 pm
Self-guided walk of reflection offered at Kingfisher Farm.

New to Southpoint?

At Southpoint, it all begins with God’s love. Just as a plant grows, it receives sunshine, so we grow as we receive God’s love. At Southpoint, we are growing in our capacity to love God, ourselves, one another, and creation.

We seek to be a community of grace that is intentional yet organic, spacious yet authentic, grace-filled yet accountable. * We are fully welcoming. *

We encourage relationships rather than run programs, yet we recognize the importance of intentionality and structure as we nurture life together.

As a community, we seek to put our love in action. We value helping out on Sunday mornings, sharing food, and showing up in hard times. We keep our church life simple so folk have time to build relationships with family, friends, and neighbours. We encourage folk to serve in tangible ways within the wider community. We rent space rather than own a building, allowing us to do more with less, supporting missions at home and abroad.

Curious to know more?

These six slides express what motivates our ministry (best viewed on a monitor). Here’s the bio of our Pastor, Rev. Anne Baxter Smith.

If you’d like to really peek inside, sign up for our weekly Southpoint News (scroll to brown footer at bottom of page). The Southpoint News is a MailChimp distributed email—you can unsubscribe anytime and will not be added to our contacts list. Email us at office@southpoint.ca. Website: southpoint.ca.

Progress Pride Flag by Daniel Quasar (link)

No comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *