The beach house where we’ve gone for some twenty years in Florida feels like another home to me. It’s not ours, and yet it is because we have generated many memories there. Each time we arrive I feel a tremendous sense of relief that it looks much the same. As important as the house itself, which sits in a marsh on the bay side of a barrier island, is the long dock that winds out to the water. Robert is likely to take off down the dock first thing. Both of us will spend hours on the screen porch looking out across the bay and soaking in the sights and sounds of ospreys, owls, pelicans, terns, and eagles. And this year we’ll be surrounded by extended family.
As others of us travel or come back from time away, I hope you will offer prayers for the other place of retreat in all our lives, our church. It, too, can be an oasis, a place of refreshment and restoration, and we don’t have to journey far to get there. We only need to journey past the voice in our head that says church “takes away” from other things.
Scripture Readings for Sunday, July 24: Ezekiel 17:22-24; Mark 4:30-32
The prayer list can be found here.