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Religious 'meadow' much more fun than grass

By The Rev. Holly Slater

First Lutheran Church

This summer is much different than last year.

Last year everything was brown. This year, green is bountiful as I look around the landscape. But, because the land works with what it has been given, and what it is currently given, my lawn is an interesting state. Last year, much of it seemed to have died because we just couldn't keep up with the watering. This year, where there was death, there is new life.

But it is not necessarily the life we expected. There is grass, but along with grass is a variety of other green species. Not all weeds, but not all grass either. So my husband termed it, "a meadow." Now I am not sure I want a meadow for a lawn, grass seems to be my primary wish of what I would like my lawn to be. But yet we have "a meadow" instead.

My husband related that to our religious beliefs and who we are as Christians. I appreciated his observation so much that I would like to share it. He shared that often we want to have other Christians to be exactly like us, to have "grass" in our pews. But, he said, life is much more fun as a "meadow." And I agree.

One thing I have appreciated in the Mitchell community is having many different ways we worship one God and different Christian traditions. I have great respect for the other pastors and religious leaders in town. And I find that my role is to help people find a place to worship that is both challenging and at home.

So I believe in meadows, of deepening of our community, not be all being the same flavor of Christianity, but of gaining life out of many different types of Christianity. I appreciate that we can enter into conversation, not always agreeing with one another, but of having respect for one another and deepening our community through the life Christ brings out in our various traditions.

Grass may look pretty and seem easy, but life is more rewarding when there is a meadow of beliefs and traditions which still point to the same place: our One God.