Friday, March 25, 2016

The News from Magruder 3/20-26

The Spring continues to take a stronger grip on the weather, as we see the total domination of rain dwindle a bit, giving way to occasional sunshine each day. We are less waterlogged and more consistently damp out here on the coast. It's been a quiet week at Magruder--it's Spring Break, so outdoor school has the week off. This weekend we have a group who comes in annually and does their own meal, and then we host a community sunrise service Easter morning, so there's much less preparation necessary. With the hiatus, most of the camp staff has taken the opportunity to lay low.

There's something about a rest week that can seep into the body if you let it. Even if you're in the office every day, there's a feeling that things are less rushed, less mandatory, that we can take it as it comes. It's a Biblical thing to even let the land rest, and walking around a place on the quiet day after
lots of activity can be really refreshing. It's not that the busy time is a bad thing, it's not like we should always be at rest, but when we find that moment of balance between the two, we find something beautiful.

We are nearing the end of Lent. As I write, it's Good Friday. By the end of the weekend, we'll be at Easter. This time of reflection, of holding back and examining our weaknesses will be drawn to a close. It will usher in this time we shift our focus to new life, and I can feel that happening before my eyes at camp right now. Spring is ushering in new plant life. Song birds are returning. I hear their songs more and more as I walk around camp. The squirrels will soon be back at work in response to the evergreens pollinating.

We have almost hired all our summer staff, and we will be training the next generation of counselors and deans in just two weeks. I am still finding quiet moments around camp, time to walk the beach at low tide and think about the power right next to me, time to stand next to the lake with a mountain backdrop realizing the fortune of being at this place in this moment. The quiet moments won't disappear as the year goes on, but they will be more difficult to find soon. We will be celebrating the joy of growth, the joy of sunshine and warmth, the joy of a huge group of people gathering together.

Right now, we are taking in a few more moments of reflection, of preparation. We are still examining. We are walking the camp as it rests, knowing that rest is not forever. Soon, there will be children, families, students, nature lovers, seekers, servants roaming these grounds looking for ways to play,
ways to learn, ways to grow, ways to seek joy. Today, in these waning days of Lent, we still feel the quiet, still experience the reflection, the wondering at how it will all turn out.

We watch it and we are hopeful. That hope leads to excitement. That excitement leads to action. Under this blue sky with puffy white clouds, we have a taste of what is to come. Summer is on its way. But, today we are in Spring, and in this time, in this place, it is pretty darn good itself.

During this holy weekend, keep our time with the Lents Tongan Retreat and our Easter Sunrise service in your prayers. We hope you find something new and beautiful as Lent draws to a close and Easter emerges, new and alive.

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