Reverend Susan Blagden from Rowen reflects on a sculpture with lessons for this time of waiting and change …
Gwyliwch eich hunain. Daliwch i gredu. Byddwch yn ddewr. Byddwch yn gryf.
1 Corinthiaid 16: 13
Keep alert, stand firm in your faith, be courageous, be strong.
1 Corinthians 16: 13
Many of you will remember the fabulous workshops and exhibition that were organised by Sara McKee, of ‘Life: Full Colour’ last October in St. Mary’s Conwy. The sculptures created by Alan Pascuzzi had a profound effect on me and I have continued to live with them and let them speak to me since that time. David’s talk about ‘waiting’ in the service yesterday reminded of this sculpture, entitled ‘Faith’.
What is it that enables us to wait? How do we wait in that in-between space of an organised, settled past life and an, as yet, unknown future? There may be many answers to that question but one of the most significant is our faith. When I was little I remember my dad preaching a story about faith. The essence of it was faith’s relationship to facts and feelings.
This sculpture portrays that very clearly for me. The head is slightly tilted, the eyes are looking up in a stance that can remind us of the facts of our faith: we look to God whose nature is unchanging, and so can be depended on. In order for faith to positively influence our futures though, we need to also be aware of that left hand, slightly behind the rest of the body and out of sight, where all those fingers are tightly wrapped around something.
Our hands often close when we feel frightened or anxious. It can be difficult to let go. It can also be difficult to let go of something we might have valued in the past but which has now served its purpose. However, until we find the grace and courage to let go of these feelings we will not feel the momentum that allows us to step into this new future.
We need the other hand to be open, already reaching for the new promise of God, and we wait with faith. The waiting will be different for each of us although we also wait together as we seek to discern how we might express our common life in the future.
For now, let us notice our gaze. Let us choose to look with confidence to God, our creator and sustainer. Let us also notice what we are individually as well as collectively holding on to. What am I/we being asked to let go of? Are we ready to take the next step of faith to be the people of God in this place, even if that means doing things differently?
God of truth,
in the Resurrection of your Son,
you reveal to us the meaning of all things.
Increase our faith
so that we may see your presence
in all that comes to us this day.
Hear us through Jesus, the Christ, our Lord. Amen.
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