Creating Spaces for All

May 15th, 2012 by root

Last Saturday was a beautiful late spring day. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, and a light breeze was blowing. What better conditions could there be to gather in the beauty of Ebenezer’s churchyard and help children build bluebird houses?

Over 50 people gathered together to (unknowingly) help Ebenezer UMC fulfill it’s vision statement. Ebenezer’s vision is to create opportunities and spaces for renewal to all by the power of the Holy Spirit. This vision was fulfilled last Saturday in two ways.

First, the church provided an opportunity and a space for families to work together to build something. It was a joy watching parents teaching their kids how to swing a hammer, hold a nail and marvel at what they created together. After the houses were built, hot dogs were consumed and the children ran out into the yard to play while the adults met one another and talked and laughed together. It was a wonderful time of renewal for each individual, as well as for families that might not get to spend as much time together as they would like.

I was surprised by the second way we lived into the vision statement last week. You see, the vision statement is meant to be inclusive: “renewal to ALL.” When we crafted this statement, we had in mind the young and old, rich and poor, churched and unchurched, Black, White, Asian, Hispanic, and more. What we didn’t consider was human and animal. But last Saturday we created spaces for renewal to all, even bluebirds!

God’s plan from the beginning of creation was for humanity to be caretakers over the earth, to tend to the land and care for the animals. We are responsible for this world and all the creatures in it. Ebenezer’s land borders Jordan Lake State Park. You feel as if you are in the middle of God’s Creation when you stand in the yard of our church. There’s something special about singing hymns in worship and looking out the old glass windows at birds singing along from the trees outside. So, yes, Ebenezer UMC creates opportunities and spaces for renewal to all (even the birds) by the power of the Holy Spirit.

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