This month's reflection is slightly different. A friend of mine gave me a book for my birthday entitled, "The Blessing of the Beasts." When I saw the cover and the title it made me smile and think oh how very Episcopalian. Then I read the front cover insert summarizing the story:
"Francesca and Martin originally met in a trash can: He had startled her by rising from the garbage, wearing a cap of coleslaw and a mustache of yogurt. As a young roach, Francesca was warned against churches; she knew personally of one entire roach family mercilessly crushed by the cleaning woman. As the service approaches Francesca yearns to be there, but Martin warns against: "I don't think that we are meant to be included, Francesca. It's for the respectables, the cute and cuddlies. We are outcasts, my dear. They'll never let us in."
And then I felt my heart crush and my smile wane, because there's a truth to this short exchange. It's in the missed opportunities. It's in our own fears. It's there when we fail all those we consider other. It's within the words there but for the grace of God go I. It's when we see ourselves separate from one another, we miss opportunities to let someone who's different into our lives.
I invite you to pray this month, pray for what your deepest hopes and dreams are for [insert your church] and for yourselves.