“Hope is an Action Word”
Katharine White, an editor and writer for the New Yorker magazine
and wife of famed author E.B. White, would pre-select a fall day to plant her spring garden. The certainty of terrible weather never stopped her.
White writes, “The hour had struck, the strategy of spring must be worked out according to plan,” he recalled in his introduction to “Onward and Upward in the Garden,” a book of his wife’s gardening articles he selected and edited.
When the day arrived, Katharine would dress in a raincoat, wool hat, and floppy shoes to direct her garden helpers from a canvas chair located in a spot where she could see her whole garden.
E.B. White recalled, “As the years went by and age overtook her, there was something comical yet touching in her bedraggled appearance on this awesome occasion — the small, hunched-over figure, her studied absorption in the implausible notion that there would be yet another spring, oblivious to the ending of her own days, which she knew perfectly well was near at hand, sitting there with her detailed chart under those dark skies in the dying October, calmly plotting the resurrection.”
Calmly plotting the resurrection… I love that. I love that because spring in the Northern Hemisphere often coincides with our celebration of Jesus’ resurrection. When April and May arrive, we can see the signs of resurrection all around—new life springing forth from the earth. Budding trees. Cheerful daffodils. The grey and brown of winter turn to vibrant shades of green. What would our winters be like without the hope of Spring? Similarly, what would our lives be like without the hope found in Christ?
Hope, dear friends, isn’t something that happens to us; it is something that happens within us. And it is up to us to bring our hope in the Resurrected Christ into the world. God calls us to BE the good news outside the church walls, to be Jesus’ hands and heart in our neighborhood.
It is up to us to sow seeds of ministry and plot the resurrection in our communities.
If you’re looking for a place to start, look no further than here, your very own faith community. This is an active congregation, and many hands and hearts go into making the ministries and worship at St. John’s a reality.
We are currently collecting items for special Mother’s Day boxes for the women at Fearless and used cell phones to support US soldiers and their families. The St. Paul’s Methodist Food Pantry is also in need.
If you feel like getting your hands dirty, there are plenty of opportunities to work on the church grounds. Or maybe you’ve been germinating a new ministry idea and want to bring it to the community. Now is the time! In other words, if you have been looking for a way to get involved here at St. John’s, this is YOUR invitation to hopeful action.
I look forward to getting to know you more and sowing the seeds of ministry in Middletown alongside you! A blessed Easter season to you and your families, friends!
Yours in Christ+
Pastor Rebekah Swanson