Tuesday, July 29, 2008
There's no Place Like Home
I have been thinking a great deal lately about the "Wizard of Oz." The 1939 movie, starring Judy Garland was a seminal part of my growing up and we would gather around the TV set (or go to a neighbor's who had a color TV) and watch it when it came on once a year. I did not see it on the big screen until our oldest daughter was four and we took Emily to see it at the Walters Art Gallery. The special effects were amazing for their time and on the big screen the flying monkeys and the melting witch scared us all. I have been thinking of that story a lot because it is the tale of a girl going on what starts as an accidental journey where she learns many lessons about love, life and home. In the process, she finds friends and helps them discover their gifts, she finds her own gifts and power and lets go of some pretty unreal expectations for her life. Growing up and moving on means letting go of old presumptions, letting them die and discovering new gifts and powers that have been hiding inside all along. It is the release of the old expectations that makes room for new possibilities. "There's no place like home" only becomes possible when we have new eyes for our home.
When ever I think about the Wizard of Oz, I realize it is triggering in me the need to let go, let some presumptions die and make room for new possibilities. It is time to let go of the things that are broken and old, that no longer can contain who and what I am becoming. It is the same for institutions like our Church. Our Anglican Communion as it was presumed to be, is no longer what it used to be, no longer what was possible then. We can't learn what it can become until we are able to let go of the presumptions and broken vessels and let God reveal the new power and gifts in our midst. I ask God's strength this day to be able to let go of all that is clogging and congesting the move forward for me personally, for all of us and especially for the Bishops as they gather in Lambeth. We are not what we were before, we don't fit in the mold anymore, but it was a presumptive mold, and must be broken open for the spirit of God to remake it. May we all have the strength to delight in God's stretching us in new ways, and our willingness to put down what is not longer functioning, whether myth, icon or structure. May our emptiness be filled with God's gifts. May our brokenness be a sign of God's healing.
you put the sun in the sky and shielded us with trees and vines. You have brought us to a new day, with new possibilities and new challenges. Help us to let go of our rigid expectations. Help us to inhabit new dreams in new languages. Help us to be fearless in our pursuit of your love in our midst. We ask this all in Christ's name, Amen.
your dazzling stars remind us of your constancy. Your brilliant moon reminds us of your willingness to encircle our lives and be with us in our darkest hours. Be with all who pray this night for new vision, new revelation. May your love be revealed in the people around us. May your encircling promises be incarnate in our lives. May we be agents of your love in this world which so needs your presence and tenderness. In the name of Christ, the tender shepherd of all wandering flocks, Amen.