In my January service, we looked at the requirements of ministry and
membership, and how they translate to citizenship. Looking for elements that would help us to build a strong religious community, I hovered
between two meditations, and finally settled on Victoria Safford’s piece about hope. We begin in hope, to work rigorously together. But I loved another reading, too, one about an attitude that can become a roadblock in congregations and relationships:
“The Place Where We Are Right”
From the place where we are right
Flowers will never grow in the Spring.
The place where we are right
Is hard and trampled like a yard.
But doubts and loves dig up the world
Like a mole, a plough.
And a whisper will be heard in the place
Where the ruined house once stood.
by Yehuda Amachai
Church is a place, where we want to be right. The fellowship is such an important home for us, sometimes the only place we can be fully ourselves. Often, it feels like the source of hope in the world. And it is so tempting to know just what is needed here. For all of us, ministers, members, parents, staff, children, committee chairs, hard working volunteers, board, officers. . . . for all of us, it is well to remember, when considering any question, that
we might be wrong. Or that listening may be more important than jumping to the right answer. Or that something important is growing in the relationships among us. I’m thinking of all this not as a cure for a problem – I haven’t seen entrenched certainty here –but as a building block for congregational health.
May our doubts and loves dig up the fields and prepare the rich soil for planting.
Rev Kerry Mueller