Rain, Clouds, Puddles, and Living Water
Copyright 2003 by William Meisheid
It is raining today. It has been raining a lot of days
lately. Indeed, it is hard to remember the previous four years of
semi-drought when inundated by our current abundance. From some perspectives
our church has been going through a semi-drought for a long, long time.
However, there are a few rain clouds on the horizon; there is the scent of
moisture in the air. Let me explain.
I have been talking with Herman Smith about his
evangelism efforts. His plan is very simple, very low tech, and very
personal. You see he distributes used bulletins from our Sunday services
with a cover letter from Herman and his wife. In this down-to-earth and
straightforward manner he introduces our church to the surrounding
community, while also introducing himself as a committed and representative
member. Has it born results? Yes, it is beginning to. While Herman would
like to see his efforts expanded by others within the church, let's not miss
the fact that his small cloud has begun to scatter raindrops on our parched
I have also been talking with some of the members of
the website committee. They have succeeded in putting into the websphere a
quality presentation of our church community and mission. Unlike Herman,
their approach is complex, high tech, and somewhat impersonal. But it can
reach people Herman's approach cannot. I see another cloud that has been
seeded in today's tech savvy population and we await its chance to begin
watering our ground.
As I leave the service on Sunday I often look into the
Sacristy and see the Altar Guild at work, cleaning up after the service. I
have noticed new faces there, faces that represent the slowly growing
diversity of our congregation. This is good since new commitments to service
mean new commitments to the ongoing life of our church and bode well for
watering our future.
I was glancing at the vestry listing the other day and
was struck by the freshness of the list. Yes there are members who have
served before and should be commended for their continuing sacrifice, but
there were also a number of "freshmen", people who are serving for the first
time. That is also good, since they are new clouds, new possibilities for
watering our common ground.
Looking out my window I see a small bird splashing in
one of the puddles in my parking area. There is exuberance in its enjoyment
of the water. From that sight my mind drifts forward to the day when there
are puddles throughout our church and people splashing exuberantly in them.
Jesus told a gathered crowd in the temple court " "If anyone is thirsty, let
him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said,
streams of living water will flow from within him." (John 7:37-38)
Rain, clouds, puddles, living water, all images of the
needed nourishment for growth and health. All reasons to enjoy the current
abundance of rain while it lasts and to celebrate the efforts of those who
are working to make it a spiritual reality in our midst.
God is good.