Saturday, February 16, 2013

A Chapel A Day- Day 3 (Wait-- Now Why Am I Here?)

I knew exactly which chapel I wanted to explore on Friday... day 3 of my Lenten journey; I'd driven by it several times over the past few years, and each time I felt drawn to the quaint, timeless charm of the historic building.

Standing in front of  St. Mary's Episcopal Church in Milton. FL near sunset, I felt transported back in time. I could vividly imagine the scene of parishioners arriving on a Sunday morning back in 1877, when the church was founded. I thought of all the families who have called this church 'home.' I imagined the baptisms, church picnics, weddings.. and funerals that have taken place here over the past 100+ years. A historic building... alive with  the history of faith, family and fellowship.

I was eager to go inside, but as I realized the church was closed, I felt disappointment set in. My instincts are typically spot-on and I really felt that this was the chapel I was supposed to visit today. 

So... what now?

I spied a white picket fence running along the side of the building. I decided to follow it. It led me here.

Photo: St. Mary's Episcopal Churc
The gate was open, so I walked inside and looked around. I made my way to a bench near the back of the garden and sat down. Still uncertain of why I was here, I decided to just sit, watch, and listen. 

My view was of the back of the church. And, while the Carpenter Gothic architectural style was captivating... and the surroundings peaceful.. I still just wasn't gettin' it. Why was I here?

Don't laugh. I actually closed my eyes, and said out loud,  "Why am I here?"

I waited. Nothing. Zip. Nada.

Then, I opened my eyes, and saw something I hadn't noticed before.
In the middle of this winter-weary garden, which was filled with the bare trees and dry leaves and brittle sticks of the season, a small burst of color was springing up!

And all of a sudden... I got it.

Many of us are winter-weary... not just in the season, but in our minds, bodies and spirits. Some of us feel dry, brittle, even dead. Responsibilities, disappointments, and the "stuff" of life have us eager for the arrival of a new season- the season of spring.

Hold on. It's coming. 

Isaiah 43:19 "See I am doing a new thing!  Now it springs up, do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and springs in the wasteland!"  

You see, just as the end of winter comes with the arrival of spring- the end of the Lenten season comes with the arrival of Easter. New life, new promises, new hope! It's hard to remember that sometimes--as we are spending our days trudging through  life's winter garden-- especially when all we can see are the bare trees, dry leaves and brittle sticks. But just for today, try to look past the grayness of the season. Look for the spots of color that are springing up! They are there!  

Right where they are supposed to be.

1 comment: