The ads pop up like annoying gnats in my email. Some suggest “we picked this just for you.” But the worst came yesterday, an ad showed a pair of skinny jeans and a mini-skirt with “this is SO you. “Well, lets just say, it’s been awhile since they’ve seen me. Otherwise they’d know this is a taunt, not a temptation.
As you can tell from my last post, I’m pondering change. Change in me, others and in our world. Recently a family member sent a photo of a t-shirt announcing : “It’s weird being the same age as old people.” Which reminds me, change can be slow like aging, or swift like the loss of a home due to fire. Or as predictable as changing seasons and entering a new grade in school. All bring challenges and opportunities. Which is why we need prayer and each other to help us handle both.
Take the challenge of school, for instance. Last Sunday Father Patrick prayed, sprinkled holy water and blessed all who came forward under a rite of fall we call, The Blessing of the Backpacks.” The first and largest group included backpack lugging children and anyone in the field of eduation. Other categories followed, like business, medicine, construction workers, moms lugging diaper bags,etc. Finally, the generic one for all who didn’t fit anywhere else but wanted whoever they were and whatever they did to be blessed. That was my group. Small but blessed and given a tag for our “backpacks” like the others.
After I returned to my seat, I read the tag’s prayer.
“O God, bless this bag and the one who carries it. May you strengthen us for the work ahead, give us confidence and inquisitiveness in learning, and refresh us at play. Open our hearts that we might show care and compassion to all we meet along the way. Amen”
Well, one thing I know is we all carry invisible backpacks and need blessings. We all bear heavy burdens and are weary from trying to fit into the world’s mold that markets, “This is SO you.” We know it’s not. But who are we?
Beloved and made by God, that’s who. And Sunday God sent a small child to remind me. He sat behind me with his family, while I sat missing Jud and my family. Then I felt a light tap and turned around to see his small hand offering me one of his animal crackers. It came like manna for the moment to a hungry heart. Kinda made me wonder if the small boy and Jesus hatched a plan to affirm, “THIS is so you.”
And thankful for Christ Church and one small boy who blessed me with far more than an animal cracker.
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