On Friday evening, we all “showed up” in the midst of whatever season we found ourselves and began the weekend confessing (with the help of Noah and U2) that despite much of our searching we “still hadn’t found what we’re looking for”.

 

You were introduced to the team through their sharing the season of life they found themselves in. Within our conversation groups we sought to put some words around our real season of life, the one much deeper than winter at The Broadmoor.

 

Through Brook we listened to the story of beads falling everywhere from the broken necklace of a cherished friendship. We saw Brook’s process of emptying herself and dropping to the floor to carefully collect the remains. It was in her descent that we discovered the beads were pearls and precious gems of humility and wisdom. She held them up as an offering to God, but her open hands allowed us to gasp at the value she now possessed. This gave great hope to all of us who have collected the broken pieces of something that was not going back together.

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Through Justin, we studied the hero’s journey and contemplated where we may be in the larger narrative of our lives. This thread that began with Little Miss Sunshine was picked up by Katherine Wolf and woven through Melissa’s portrait of Saint Patrick all the way to the personal story of Pepper. This gave us multiple chances to “get it”—the good and the difficult must co-exist in order for us to have the strength “to do the hard thing in the good story”.

 

From Katherine, we learned how to say bossy things to our souls, like:  Stop looking down! Look up! She challenged the perspective of American Christians who rush to pray, “Lord, take away my cancer” never thinking of praying “Lord, find me faithful in my cancer.” Mercy.

We were challenged to put on holy blinders (if we must) to keep from comparing or competing with those running alongside us. Like Eve who was tempted in the garden to believe there was a coupon code she did not have access to, we must reign in our wandering eyes. Otherwise, we will not be able see or value all the “good things that God does not withhold” from us.

 

We were introduced to the idea that it was not enough to simply name our Irelands and our Nazareths and know what they are. We were invited to do exceedingly more by looking for Jesus (looking for us) right in the middle of our places of fear and distrust.

 

We laughed and cried (okay, it was mostly me crying) and we connected deeply with each other in our small groups, over shared meals and even through painting with watercolors.

 

We entered a labyrinth allowing God to meet us in the midst of our journey and communicate with us through our thoughts and feelings as we walked. Many sensed God’s presence in a special way on their “path” that was affirming and loving.

 

We shared communion in community like that breakfast on the beach must have been for the disciples. It is my hope that each of you left the weekend, as I did, with a deep sense you’d been “found” on your path and “known” in your season. There is no value that can be placed on this revelation that would come close to it’s worth in our lives.

 

To God be the glory, great things he hath done!

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