From the Newsletter: “What Lies Within”


Dear Friends of Second Church,

Last week, I was blessed to preside at a wedding in San Miguel de Allende, in Mexico.

What an adventure!

My last visit to Mexico was a four hour trip to Tijuana with my dad when I was eight, so I had a lot to see and learn. It was delightful.

I learned that Mexican children have the same loyalty to their mom’s mole recipe that Italian-American kids feel about their mom’s Bolognese.

I learned that weddings involve not only the ceremony, itself, and of course the reception, but also a parade through town led by enormous puppets and a mariachi band.

Most of all, I learned that the anonymous street scape of heavy doors and shuttered windows still offered momentary sightings of interior courtyards with bright tiles, gurgling fountains and hanging curtains of flame vine — places where anyone could happily hole up for the duration.

You don’t need to convince me that houses can have souls — or spirits, anyway.

I’ll save talking about the churches and what it’s like to pray in them for another post.

Eventually, though, it was time to go.  As it always does, getting home involved waiting for a while in any number of lines — check in, security, boarding “zone,” immigration, customs, etc.

But I found myself thinking about the streets of San Miguel as I waited.  About how the impatient guy in the Barca soccer jersey and the older couple in matching Travelsmith khaki vests were, in their own way, like those enormous doors and closed windows I had seen.

Any of us presents a face to the outside world that gives little clue to what might be found inside.  Maybe we are carefully tended, manicured to the hilt.  Or surprisingly unkempt, disordered in one part and wildly beautiful in another.  The fountains flow with abandon in some; in others, the pools are melancholy and stagnant.

This is what God sees.

These are the courtyards He would tend with such patience and love, if we were willing…or where God sees His own handiwork already in blossom, creating a peaceful place where the soul dwells.

It makes me wonder what I need to do to welcome in the gardener — what needs tending to — and what it might be like to open the doors so that others might see.

See you in church,

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