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  • Veranita Alvord, Pastor

Impossibility!

"Here I am, trying to hold my tongue out to catch a snowflake while in Sevierville with my dear friend, Carrie, who lives in Nashville, TN, for Haden Institute Spiritual Direction Graduation Week Week-end in January. Impossible to catch a snowflake on the tongue! And yet, I hold out my tongue as if I hold out hope. CRAZY! Haden Institute went virtual last year in March, which changed our in-person experience at the Episcopal Retreat Kanuga, in Hendersonville, NC. The in-person experiences with my small group were changed forever. Our late night drumming, singing, dancing, snacking together was changed.


What makes things stick together? I have no clue, really. Our group of 9 has stuck together from Texas to Tennessee to Georgia to Florida and upstate New York. Our early experiences as a group held us connected, if only by a thread. My connection with Carrie is real...her experience losing her Dad as a young girl, her life on the plains and with Native Americans in sweat lodges and in conversation and struggle in South Dakota-- her work with the Nashville Recovery Center, helping country musicians loaded with talent and troubles...all of that connects us. I'm not sure why. I know she is a friend for life. I see her face and I know I love her. Her curly blond-gray hair, her smile, her rosy cheeks, her heart for helping others. Plus, we have the same style of tobaggan!


Perhaps that's what happens in the Transfiguration. Peter, James & John see the changed face of Jesus and they know. They love him. They know he is Good-God. And they will keep the secret that he is the One. The Messiah. The Anointed. They see his face and they just plain know.


Against impossibility, there is belief.

Against realism, there is trust.

Against all facts and objective reality, there is hope.

This morning when walking our puppy, Nico, and talking with my Sister, Karen, I had to stop to laugh. Here is our tiny one, Nico, trying to chase every car that comes his way. He doesn't even realize he is so little! He "sleds it," as I call it. He looks like an Alaskan Sled Dog, a Huskie, working against his harness, "Mush! Mush! Mush!" Not realizing he's so much smaller than any vehicle that comes our way, he pursues only the excitement of the chase. He takes on the chase of each car as if he can run so fast to surpass it. As if he can outrun the car! Impossible!


I got to thinking, though, would that we, as a small people, subject to the road widening by the City of Greensboro...would that we, as those who feel old, sick, depleted, tiny, those on the verge of death...would that we had an impossible pursuit of hope...to believe and live as if nothing is impossible with God, to pursue the excitement of the chase of sharing the Gospel. (Luke 1:37)


If we believed and trusted this...Wonder what God would do?


Grace & Peace,

Veranita


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