Sunday, July 22, 2007

Summer Sunday Morning 10-11

A few minutes late to church. We are discussing The Budget at home. One of my husband's amazingly generous contributions to The Seminary Adventure has been to spend hours and hours and more hours over the past week completely reorganizing our finances so that we can send me to seminary, send The Lovely Daughter to her last two years of college including her semester in Prague, repair the gutters and the plumbing, and probably not go bankrupt in the process. His attention to detail and willingness to put the time in are astounding gifts to all of us. (I will spend hours trying to come up with exactly the right phrase for a sermon or presentation, but when it comes to the spreadsheets, I am more likely to wave off with a vague, "Close enough.") I am extremely grateful that his skills and inclinations and willingness are so different from my own.

The music this morning is a sequence of piano, classical guitar, and organ. Our music director is off to an event next week-end where a work of hers for 100 guitars and maracas is being premiered. Pretty cool. Our liturgist is a friend of mine who, like me, is an nth-career seminary student. Our preacher is another in our Summer Lay Preacher series and he does a wonderful job in his deep and elegant voice, interweaving Psalm 121 and the Mary and Martha story to produce a reflection on God's call to each of us to be the person we are. He begins with what seems like a lengthy reading in what turns out to be his native Nigerian language of Yoruba -- it's Psalm 121, which we have just heard in English. Quite beautiful in the Yoruban tongue. "I will look to the hills," he repeats in English, and I think about standing on the tops of very small mountains in the Adirondacks and the Blue Ridge, and horseback riding to the tops of higher moutains in the Rockies, and looking at the tops of very high mountains in the Tetons and the Alps, and about the Sky Islands that I heard about on Morning Edition yesterday.

Conversations after church: the lingering effects of the trip on the stomachs of some of the Nicaraguan travelers, family illnesses, advice on hair coloring (I am something of a beauty klutz ~ no, make that a total and complete incompetent in certain critical areas of midlife), career changes, summer travel plans, a new college graduate about to move to Nicaragua to work with an NGO there, college preparations for other young people, concerns about the impending youth trip to Nicaragua (which seems to have become our church's sister locale).

It's another beautiful summer day and I drive home, listening to the second movement of Tschaikovsky's Fifth Symphony. It's so nice to have made the transition from the first movement of Vivaldi's Winter, the discernment music to which I listened over and over again last March, to the lush peacefulness of the music that matches my present frame of mind.


Diane said...

I love Psalm 121! sounds like you heard a good sermon

mompriest said...

Sounds like a lovely day of church. I end up being pulled in so many different directions (as the only priest) that all of my Sunday conversations are held in bits and pieces...

and I love to use music to aide my discernment process