Some time during my eldest brother’s time in college he decided that he needed to do something to liven up the long winter. With the holidays long past and spring break feeling like it was a long way out, a mid-winter occasion needed to be created.
Due to a favorable travel schedule, a couple of weeks ago I was able to attend the 35th Annual Groundhog’s Day Party at my brother’s home in Portland, Oregon. That’s right, for 35 years my brother has been celebrating the in-between-times of ‘winter is feeling long and spring is feeling as if it will never arrive’.
Clearly this annual ritual of celebrating the middle time resonates with many. With a great bluegrass band playing in the parlor, home brew being served on the deck, and a kitchen island packed with food, over 200 folks were looking for something to celebrate.
Living in this in-between / middle time is familiar territory for those who are followers of the Way of Jesus. Christ has died, Christ is risen….and now we live in the time for that which we faithfully look forward to: Christ will come again.
This time in between is the most challenging for most of us. We know what we have experienced, we know what we hope will come next, but how are we to spend this time?
Actually, I think my brother is on to something. However, it’s not original. Gather friends, family and even invite the stranger to come together for good music, good food and good fellowship to be fed and then sent forth to embrace the world around us. Sound familiar? Find your way to any one of our faith communities and you will see faithful folks being fed so they can live and share in the hope of the things to come.