Sunday, June 04, 2006

Back on the road again

Back on the bike today for a short (6.5-mile) spin in the hills above town, hardly worth getting all sweaty for but you take what you can get. I didn't sleep well last night and I'm dead tired today, but I promised myself a bike ride this afternoon and I wasn't giving that up, so when we got back from church I changed into bike clothes and off I went into the hills above town.

The wild roses are giving way now to honeysuckle, a slightly different sweet scent, which was mixed in here and there with the aroma of grass drying in the sun. That's a scent that straddles two worlds; in the country, it's what you get after hay mowing, while in the suburbs it's what the lawn smells like by Saturday afternoon. Either way, it speaks of human labor applied to what grows naturally, a good clean scent, and one of my favorites.

I also straddle two worlds, and I, too, am finding myself in transition. I said goodbye this morning to the church where I have mostly worshiped for the past year and half, not publicly but in my heart. I looked around at all those familiar faces and tried to love each one, seeing in each one a wonderful reflection of God in the world. This is a special place and I do believe God drew me here because he knew I'd be well taken care of, but in my heart I have known for a while now that this isn't where I belong for the long haul. Pursuing my reflection on places I have thought of as home in my life, I do believe the time has come to let this one go.

I made a similar resolution to move on in January, I know, and then I didn't keep it. I found it difficult to sort out the difference between being loved and welcomed and being convinced that you are where you truly belong. I will always be grateful for that little church and I will always appreciate what I found there. This time, though, I'm pretty sure I'm ready to move on.

It's Pentecost, which has always been one of my favorite feasts. I love the reading from 1 Corinthians that speaks of different gifts. I have a much broader sense of what this means than I used to, thinking now of the many different ways and places we followers of Christ live out that faith. Thanks, God, for this one.


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