Congregational Church of Jefferson Park

Pastor’s Message

Gayle Tucker's photo

Pastor Gayle’s Reflections

June 2018

“The word ordinary is rooted in the word ordinal, to count. Thus, these “days between,” as writer Wendy Wright calls them, are not simply ordinary in the way we usually use that word – uneventful, unimportant, boring – but are actually ‘Counted Time,’ time that counts, that matters.”

Kimberlee Conway Ireton, The Circle of Seasons: Meeting God in the Church Year

As of May 27, we in the church have officially entered the Season after Pentecost – Ordinary Time – our growing season. While we watch the flora and fauna grow around us, we also ought to be growing in faith. There is no need to rush, though, since our growing season continues through the end of November! There are a lot of days to count between now and Advent. Time to grow through the ordinary, everyday tasks of late spring, summer, and then autumn. What will we do to make all that time count?

One way to make even the boring parts of our lives more meaningful is mindfulness – intentional awareness of our surroundings. If we work to pay close attention to the world around us, we may sense more than we expect. Ireton writes:

For in sharpening our physical senses to be more aware of this world, we are also quickening our spirits, opening them to the earthly beauty that surrounds us so that we will be more ready to receive visions of the unearthly beauty that lies just beyond our senses on the other side of the veil. As with any grace, we cannot force or demand such a vision. We can only wait for it, attentively and hopefully, as we engage in the relationship and work that constitute our lives.

If we intentionally make this a season of growth, rather than a season of going through the motions, we may be more open to and aware of the presence of the Divine around and in us.

In worship on May 27, Trinity Sunday, we talked about and drew some of the symbols we use to describe our experiences of God. Whether these depictions come from the natural world, or mythology, or Christian tradition, or have been integrated from pagan roots, we each experience the Divine in different ways, and use a variety of terms and names to express those experiences, relationships, and understandings. As you go about your ordinary tasks, where and how do you experience God? What words or symbols help you share those experiences with others? I invite you to bring drawings, or other expressions, and add them to the drawings made in worship. The more who share, the more complete our picture and understanding of our mysterious God will be.

May we sense and share God’s grace!