In today's sermon, Karen talked about how we begin the day, and how we see our role in it. She re-told a children's story about a rooster who had thought it was his proclaiming the day by crowing that made the sun rise, and about his journey to realizing that it was his calling not to make the sun rise but to announce its coming.
This was linked to Moses' sermon which comprises the book of Deuteronomy, his last words upon the closing of his journey with his people to the promised land, after forty years in the wilderness, a sermon of instruction for how to begin a new life in a new land, a land he would never see. On this Thanksgiving Sunday, approaching my fortieth birthday this year, I am intrigued by the notion of forty years in the wilderness, and the metaphorical as well as literal meanings that may have in the bible story. And, as the summer draws to its close with the harvest, I am thinking about journeys through the seasons as well as through life.
Journeys through life are journeys through social roles, and our place in the human drama changes over time: the Thanksgiving holiday makes me think of times I enjoyed turkey around my family's table as a young girl, and as a teenager, as a young bride, then a mother of young children, and now, heading in to mid-life. I recently read Cheryl Strayed's book Wild and am reflecting on connecting points between the author's solo journey through the deserts and mountains of the Pacific Crest Trail and the trek of Moses with his people through the holy land, and even my own life course. All involve stories of challenging travel, of epiphanies as well as hardships, of loss as well as of miracles, of moving through life's roles with gratitude and acceptance. ... which brings me back to thanksgiving.
Happy thanksgiving all!