It generally takes me a long time to wake up each day. I’m not a pop out of bed type of person. My mother used to bounce into my room when I was a child, snap up the window shade, and say brightly “Up and at ‘em, madam!” Groan. If it was my father’s turn to wake me up, he would shuffle into my room and mumble “It’s daylight in the swamp.” Guess which method of awakening I preferred?

The awakening of the earth in spring reminds me that it’s okay to be slow. Plants emerge as conditions allow. I’m excited each spring to greet my plant friends in the garden, anxious to see their little green heads poking out of the soil. I eagerly wait to welcome them and myself to the growing season. I anticipate the powerful feelings of hope and gratitude that wash over me when I see those harbingers of beauty, especially after a hard winter. Which plants will survive? Which will spread? Which will bloom? I must remind myself every spring that no matter how good a gardener I am, nature has control.

As we continue to reconstitute ourselves as in-person community at First Church, some of us will be bouncy and bright, some of us will be sleepy and slow. But all of us need nourishment. We need to behold each other and let each other’s presence sink in like a gentle soaking rain after a long drought. Who are you now? What do you need to blossom? Who are we now? What do we need to heal and flourish?

Rev. Dena McPhetres, Associate Minister

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