Scripture: Most of all love each other as if your life depended on it. Love makes up for practically anything. I Peter 4:7
I woke up Thursday morning feeling vacant, lonely and vulnerable. This has been another season of saying goodbye to people who have been in my life for quite some time. As I sat on my back porch Thursday morning, I let the rays of the sun and crisp cool air wrap me in her blanket of love. I was reminded once again: we ourselves are like autumn leaves, we too can bring joy for our glorious moment on earth.
I know the time will come when this earthly home is no longer our place of residence — there is a time for us to leave. As a Pastor, I am saddened when death occurs but I also look forward to Celebration of Life ceremonies. They can become times of the Sacred as we offer comfort to those who are feeling the heart pangs the most.
Life celebrations are a time of gathering and sharing stories, a time of tears and laughter, a time of drawing together as we hold one another in love and prayer. Quaker author Phil Gulley states, “Community is a beautiful thing; sometimes it even heals us and makes us better than we would otherwise be.”
It is a time to take a survey of our own lives. We can ask ourselves, what are the things that are of utmost importance to us and how are we living into that space?
The colors of Fall bring joy to my senses, and they always call me back to that deep Sacred Space within my heart, a place where God is. As I sit and type my closing remarks, a leaf drifts by my window. It sways and moves with a motion that reminds me of the ever-flowing presence of the Spirit of God that is all around me.
This week I hope you can gather together and listen to the stories others have to share in this great circle of life called — Community. Break bread together, walk together, sit by a fire together, pray together and sing together. Create a quiet space for yourself and Creator — a space that calls you back into the Holy.
Most of all, gather in love and encouragement and become people of joy!
Prayer: Loving God, it is with gratitude I come to you today. I am grateful you have prepared a place for us when our work here is done. I say thank you for the gift of community, a place where healing can take place. Most of all I say thank you for your grace, your mercy and your Love. Amen
Nancy E. McCormick is Co-Pastor of Chester and Springfield Friends, and campus minister at Wilmington College.