Musings from the Meadow

For hours now, I’ve been gazing at a rocky labyrinth strewn across a fleeting pathway that feeds Great Falls. Miles upstream, the Potomac is rather tame, but here, just above the pounding, frothing, mist-covered mass of falls, the watery flow is readily changing, exploding skyward in staccato booms as it rounds promising, but blocked, egresses. Rivulets dancing, a deep continual underlying growling rumble, along with its attendant hiss fill primal, subliminal senses; its fullness is overflowing and overpowering. As the chasm deepens and is more restrictive, the water pulls together and bounds forward, swallowing all that gets in its way.

Overhead, the sky blazes in the last remnants of a sinking sun as it highlights the grays of the riverbed, and adds to the mystery and wonder of the moment. Across the divide, flickering flames of a campfire suddenly appear, bringing immediacy from the immensity spread before me. I can hear and see and smell and feel the intensity of a downward pull…eternal and ancient…fresh and new…building in power as water moves away from me toward a cataclysmic descent to the peacefulness of the lower river. I’ve been here before….

And so, I suspect, have you: Maybe not in this specific essence, probably not in fact; but there is an intersection of time and space that speaks to each of us; to our spirit and our soul, a place that transforms us and remakes us; a place that begs the question of who and whose we are. The wonder of creation is that we are not clones, but uniquely created beings with the giftedness to choose and to experience our own distinct journey.

During Advent, we enter into a time of beginnings, past, present, and yet to be. We remember that which we have forgotten, and that which we have not yet experienced. Time moves from Chronos (linear) to Chiros (at one). What happened millenniums ago is now; it is here. It is ours, to experience once again majesty and wonder, to know cold and fear, to gift and be gifted, to sing and to praise, to cry and to be warmed, to know and to be known. Such is our birthright. Alas, we sometimes go astray. For some we must know the cataclysmic dislocation of chaos: “The Great Falls,” before knowing the reality of grace and of peace.

As I continue to gaze at the boulders, the white foam lapping the shore, and at the phosphorescence of the water, there is a sudden stillness…in the midst of turmoil, noise, and ever-shifting currents, in the midst of the hubbub, I experience the words, “My peace I give to you.” As I look up, the light of the even star pierces the clouds… Could it be? “Star of Wonder, Star of Light?”

May you and yours know the Wonder, the Blessedness, and the Holiness of this Season.

~~ Pastor John

PS—Please accept this invitation to stop by on Sundays, at 10:00 am, and on Christmas Eve for the 7:00 pm Family Service and/or the 11:00 pm Traditional service. We’d love to worship with you!