I am a parish minister currently serving the Eliot Church of Natick MA. Eliot Church is a Community Church affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist Association and the United Church of Christ. Any statements made and postions held in "Unity," however, are solely mine(of course, they may be used with appropriate atribution). Therefore if you disagree, please do not blame the church!

Friday, March 24, 2006


I am tired these days. Probably it is in part because of the new baby and partly it is because of Lent. My computer also died, precipitating more hours in the office writing and researching my sermon for this Sunday. The title: "Welcome Spring!"...

This time of year, I think, many of us feel this way. Certainly in my conversations with colleagues I have heard much the same thing. There is a weariness that runs through our talk. There is an accumulation of winter concerns that weigh us down. We are right on the edge of turning some corner that--when we do--will change our perspective and, quite possibly the arc of our lives.

That corner for me comes some time around Easter morning. Sometimes not right on the day but it comes and I say "Oh...this is how it is!" then I get that burst of energy to carry through to the next small revelation. The trick is to understand that there is no speeding the process up. Now is the preparation time. Right now we wait, go about our work and get ready for the moment when inspiration (or resurrection) strikes.

Of course, we don't wait alone. This is part of the reason I love church. I remember a congregation I served in Sangerville, Maine where we would all gather in the kitchen on Wednesday mornings before the sun came up during Lent. We would have pancakes and smoked salmon. We would have some reading and then we would chat before folks went off to work. I am thinking about those meals this March. Human connections get us through the hard times. Lent helps us practice relating to each other for when the hard times are less seasonal and more unexpected.

So I have a question, dear reader, how does this process work for you? Does your life cycle from winter to spring in this way, or does your spiritual calendar differ? I have always loved Easter because of the change and the clarity I get from it. For someone else, this may come at a different time. I am curious about this. I know of few people who never experience times of serious reflection. The few I do know I often think could use one...

Here is a quote I found from Charles Dickens that goes well with the week.

It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.

May your summers grow and your winters recede this season and when your winters return, may they make you strong.