I spent the weekend in the Blue Ridge Mountains helping with a retreat for Holy Covenant UCC from Charlotte, so I was not at my church for worship or World Wide Communion Sunday. The focus of the retreat was on the Psalms. Nancy Allison, a longtime friend and the pastor at Holy Covenant, pointed out that the references in the Psalms to being “sheltered under God’s wing” were talking about something that wasn’t permanent: a respite before a return to the realities of human existence. I am back down the mountain now and preparing to face the week ahead.
As I drove down the mountainside,
the radio waved a warning
of terror attacks both far and wide
and thunderstorms a-forming.
One puffy cloud in the evening sky
Stretched softly like a wing,
The Rock of Ages drifting by,
and I could not help but sing,
“Tune my heart to sing thy praise” —
words I know by head and heart
that say the living of these days
calls us to courage and to art.
Safety is not a fertile thing;
out of our pain we learn to sing.