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More or Less Church

Joanna Depue "DJ/Deacon J" writes original songs and liturgies, does daily Farm office work and records Barbara's eMos on The Geranium Farm. A singer and dog trainer she utilizes healing touch in her private massage practice. PLEASE share YOUR original ideas for worship, special liturgies, prayers, songs, sermons and noteworthy blogs right here.
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Friday, April 08, 2005


If the Geranium Farm had a motto, I think it would be: For God's sake, Plant a Seed! Whether the Farmer involved be Barbara, Debbie or myself, we are all about the same thing- planting a seed in your life: a seed of comfort, a seed of inspiration, a seed of practicality, a seed of hope, a seed of humor. The most amazing thing that has happened, particularly recently, is that the seeds that were sown are beginning to reap a harvest! I thought it would be a good thing to share the harvest: two 'off-site' farmers are offering their seeds now. And the Farm is very happy to provide the fertile ground to let those seeds get what they need - growing, flourishing, and potentially inspiring production of your own.

Please take a read of these two offerings: thoughts on the Gospel for Apr.4 from Thom Shuman of Cincinnati, OH and Emmaus, a poem by Kyle Wisely, of Portland, OR.

May God's grace send a warm radiance and a gentle shower that these gifts produce a bountiful harvest in the hearts of your faithful people.
Amen and Amen!


This is the day we have all been waiting for!

No, not the first day of spring, silly - Opening Day! The first day of the brand new baseball season. The sun is shining, the sky is blue, the birds are singing, and the Reds are playing baseball!!!

And here in Cincinnati, it is the same as a national holiday. Call just about any office, any person and the message is the same - "sorry, I am working out of
the office today; I won't be in the office today; my apologies, I am not at my desk today." Right. The critical work that everyone is "out of the office" for today is baseball. If you don't have tickets to the game, you are at home sitting on your deck, in your favorite chair, listening on the radio.

A local sports writer says that baseball players are luckier than the rest of us who work. Every year, they have a day when the slate is wiped clean, when the past is forgotten, when the future lies open before them, when they can write new statistics, new chapets, a new life. It is called "Opening Day".

Oh, don't we all wish we had an annual Opening Day at our jobs, in our marriages, in our journeys, in our lives!

As believers, we do.

Because of what God, in Christ did on that great Opening Day of all opening days, we have that chance to have the pages torn out of the book of life and new, blank pages put in. Because of that first Easter, when Jesus strode forth from the darkness of death into the new creation, we can walk out of the shadows of our sin into the future God holds out to us. Because of that first day of the week, when the stone was rolled away, and the doors to the Kingdom were thrown open, our past is behind us, our life is before us, our journey begins anew!

And now, every morning is Easter; every waking is a fresh start; every day is Opening Day!

Play Ball!!!

- - - -
(c) 2005 Thom M. Shuman

Thom M. Shuman
Greenhills Community Church, Presbyterian
Cincinnati, Ohio

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I've journeyed down this road
As long as I can remember,
And always, they tell me,
The village of Emmaus
Is just ahead
"Just a few more leagues,
A few steps more --
You should arrive ere sundown
If you do not tarry."

But I have trod this road so long
That the destination is indistinct.
What really lies at the end of this journey?
Is this village a worthy destination,
As I have been led to believe --
Or is its unknown nature
Something to be feared and dreaded?

I know of none who have returned from there
Except for One,
And he has shown himself all too infrequently,
And ever in a manner so unclear
As to arouse considerable doubt
(The mind can play tricks, you know).

And so we walk this day -
I and a friend who recently joined this path -
A third one joins us:
Suddenly, unexpected and unobtrusive.
We chatter on of things that matter to us:
The events and people that we find important
In our lives,
And it seems as news to him,
He listens kindly and intently.

"Who are you, anyway?"
As I walk I hear me ask myself,
And spend great time and effort
Pursuing the answer.
But there are always other voices that distract,
Clamoring with their news,
Their needs,
Their wants,
Their pain.
And there are always many
Eager to provide the answers,
Describing you in great detail
And teaching why and how
I should proceed.
But their answers are never mine.

And so we walked,
Coming at last to a resting place;
And you lingered with us -
Were present in our sharing.
And as you broke the bread -
Which was my heart -
I caught a glimpse
Of who you are.

And what has this pain of recognition taught me?
That the journey is more important
Than the destination;
That the pathway more instructive
Than the inn;
And that the pain,
For reasons known only to the One
Who fashioned us,
Is the only doorway
To that Eternal Place
Which is not at the end of the path,
But is the very path itself -
If we but see.

White Salmon, Washington
18 September, 1994

copyright 1994, Kyle T. WIseley


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