Saturday, April 28, 2012

Starfish, Earth Day, and us

A good sermon is one that I remember beyond Sunday, or even beyond the parking lot at church.

Last Sunday The Rev. Fletcher Davis gave a memorable Earth Day sermon, tied to the Gospel lesson. Here is the image from the sermon that has stuck with me.

On a saltwater beach after a large storm a caring individual saw many starfish that had been tossed by the storm high up the beach. They had attached themselves to the seawall way above their normal habitat. They would not survive way up there. A thoughtful beach walker began peeling one starfish after another off of the seawall and with a strong thrust throwing them back into the water where they would have a much better chance of surviving.

A person walking down the beach saw the tossing of the starfish, stopped and asked, “What are you doing? You know that you cannot save them all. There are too many of them.”

The individual replied, “That may be true, but I …. Can …. save…THIS…One” as the starfish was, with effort, hurled back into the sea.

The moral that sticks with me is that I may not be able to effect much change in our world, but I can do something.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Balancing a dichotomy in military life

We received an order for Prayer Book for the Armed Services for a chapel at a military base in the U.S. today. We are glad to help supply our service men and women with books for their spiritual needs.

Perhaps it is “of course” a chapel at an army base would include as part of the signature, “Faith and Firepower.” It sticks with me the dichotomy of trying to hold both parts of a serviceperson’s life together that is reflected in that closing statement. The Army is rightfully about firepower. The individual humans in the Army also have a spiritual side that can be described as faith.

How do they hold those two parts of their in balance?