Wooodstove at the Norlands New England farmhouse [Maine, 2002]
Brrrrrr! It’s a frozen tundra out there! Siberia! Minnesota! Walking from the church door to our car was blustery enough for me…I am content to sit on my sweet little olive green couch, with my favorite thrift store quilt (freshly washed, dried, and fluffed) and sip my tea while watching the snow blow in icy gales outside.
Some warm thoughts on this blustery Sunday:
Today our pastor talked about how the church can be a sort of “Wayside Inn” both to its members, and to those who stop by. I loved this imagery, first because it brought back wonderful memories of a blustery January spent with the New England Saints (a group of Calvin students, not the football team!) on a farm in Maine, then at the North Bridge Inn in Concord, MA, where we journaled, read Hawthorne, Alcott, and Longfellow, and explored the old streets and bookshops of Concord…a dream January!
I also love this imagery because I cherish my Sabbath days as a stop on the journey, a place of rest, with a warm fire lit, and plenty of food, as place to pass the time with other pilgrims, and a place to share stories of the road. I am so thankful for the opportunity to gather with other journeying folks, for the chance to glimpse this small glimmer of what the heavenly feast will be like. Imagine, the Innkeeper running down the road to meet us, to usher us in from the journey, offering us His coat and a warm place to rest, and welcoming us home.
One Autumn night, in Sudbury town,
Across the meadows bare and brown,
The windows of the wayside inn
Gleamed red with fire-light…
From: Tales of a Wayside Inn, Prelude
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow