I was feeling grumpy.
OK, I was feeling grumpy-er. Always play to one’s strengths.
I was walking down Fifth Avenue, heading to Rockefeller Center.
Visitors to New York filled the sidewalk. They stopped in the middle and made quick turns. They abruptly countermarched, heading back uptown without warning.
My blood pressure rose. My ire increased. And then I saw her.
She sat in a wheel chair, looking at the lights and the sights.
I do not know her name and never learned her story. It was inappropriate to ask. But I wondered.
Was this her first time in New York – the culmination of a long-time dream?
Was she a long-time city resident?
Was this an annual visit?
In the end, the reason mattered not. All that mattered was her face.
She glowed. Amazement. Wonder. Delight. Many words could describe her face and bearing. But the one that works best for me, is joy. Simple joy. Pure joy. Unabashed joy. I have not seen such joy often, but I have seen it enough that I recognize it when I do.
I saw joy that day and I carried it in my heart to Rockefeller Center. I hope it showed, just a little, on my face.
See you along the trail.
P.S. – the photo was taken inside the Time Warner Center on the same day. I did not get any photos at Rockefeller Center. I will be back.
“God hopes we don’t approach the gift of our unity out of begrudging obligation, but that by God’s grace, we will embody our unity from a spiritual posture of joy and awe, amazed at how wonderfully God has made us one.”
Shannon Johnson Kershner
Lenten Reflections on the Confession of Belhar
give rise to
This Lenten season I am using a new resource to explore the Belhar Confession: Lenten Reflections on the Confession of Belhar, edited by Kerri N. Allen and Donald K. McKim. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), in which I serve as a teaching elder (pastor), added the Confession of Belhar to our Book of Confessions in 2016. This confession came from the Dutch Reformed Mission Church during its historic struggle against apartheid in South Africa.
See you along the Trail.
After a ten-day trip to Louisville, I returned to New York to view something I have never since in the two and a half years I have lived here. I noticed it as soon as the cab driver pulled into the parking lot. Amazement swept over me. I called Tricia to tell her what I saw.
Then I paused and took a photo of the Shire near the Hudson.
When I arrived in October 2010, scaffolding surrounded the front of the building and wove throughout the Morningside Gardens complex as tuck pointing and work on the roofs took place on the roof. The amount of scaffolding actually increased before, not so long ago, it came down around one of the other buildings.
I cannot say when it came down around my building. I left town on April 10. The scaffolding covered the building. Between that day and today, it came down. And I have seen something I have not seen before.
Lots of scaffolding remains throughout Morningside Gardens. But the work may actually end.
See you along the Trail.