Crossing Boulevard

with Rev. Rachel


This child has not chosen this moment and by virtue of his having-done-nothing- and-incapable-of-earning-anything state, the clearest, most pure definition of grace will rise among us. Liken it to the smell of Sweet Autumn Clematis or Frasier fir—unmistakable, even if hardly describable.

Though we might say things like “welcome to the family of God”, listen carefully and you will hear this very thing being uttered by the one who cannot speak. It’s funny what will lift us out of the amnesia...with a little water, an overdressed baby, a small army of loved ones in the house for the occasion...we remember.

Depending on the cast of characters involved, a baptism is heavy on cleansing imagery. Hear this: With those waters God bathes them in their original goodness. With those waters we enact what we hope this child will do over and over again, throughout his days—to wash away the half-truths about ourselves and about others that are proffered by all manner of wolves in sheep clothing.

The Sacrament of Baptism calls forth our hidden wholeness. We glimpse, if just for a moment, how the various Emperors have no clothes on. We dare to see through the eyes of the child or through the eyes of God, between which the line is thin.

Some of us might see how “the powers and principalities would hold less sway over our lives if we refused to collaborate with them. But refusal is risky, so we deny our own truth...(P. Palmer)”.

Our truth, Paul writes, is that we are the household of God. The apostles and prophets of old laid the foundation. In Jesus, whose heart fills the house and whose ways shape our ways, we are being built into a dwelling place for God.

Though I worry, I am not at all worried about the state of this little man’s soul. When we went about the work of setting a date, I was thinking about Boulevard and about the larger truth and beauty of this thing called the household of God.

So Bruce, give us a tour. Reawaken us to the purpose of tables and towels, to the spirituality of the kitchen and the garden. We are listening. We’re all yours~

UncategorizedRachel May