Strands are woven around my body, through my mind, inside the very marrow of my soul.
Woven by me?
Woven by God.
Woven, yes. But not a trap.
Always, always an opportunity.
These little guys have been hanging around my desk for quite some time now. “Word” (the little guy with the book), “Sacrament” (yeah, with the wine bottle and bread) and “Order”, (the guy in the dark brown robe and the puzzled look toward the sky) were all given to me on the occasion of my ordination by one of my sponsors, Rev. Judy Fisher. She is even responsible for naming these Friar Folk for me and explaining that the best thing she could think of for ordering the life of the church was a whole lot of prayer. That’s probably why I have, through the years, purchased the other two praying Friars, appropriately named “Uh-Oh” and “What-do-I-do-now, God?”
Whenever I look at any of my Friar Folk – and yes, there are more of them – I am reminded that I am connected not only to God through my ordination but to many other sisters and brothers in this “order” we call Elders. I am bound to them by something more than mere words that I said in my vows. I am bound to them by more than just words that appear on any page.
I am bound by God to be in covenant with these brothers and sisters by the very Word of God.
Our denomination has been going through a whole lot of upheaval lately. I could describe it in detail but that’s not necessary and it really isn’t helpful. The fact of the matter is that those of us who are “bound” together find ourselves disagreeing with one another. Some think one way…some think another. Some are even willing to call the others “wrong”. (As an aside, I do not have a Friar Folk name “Wrong” or “Right” for that matter.)
I think about my ordination often and I think about the problems we as Elders are having with one another. I am glad I have these three guys and their friends around to remind me that I am bound to others. I also have a great group of Elders that I am in a Covenant Group with that are always there to remind me of the tie we have. And yeah, sometimes it even gags us!
I don’t have all the answers to what we are facing together but this much I know…I do not have to be “right” about anything. And you, my sister or brother, do not have to be “wrong.”
There is something bigger than what we can know, understand and figure out that holds us together. We are bound…Thank God…we are bound to one another.