I am sitting in a chair my neighbor gave us admiring my lawn. It is lush, green, and professionally well kept. Seriously, we are surrounded by a professionally manicured lawn, professionally trimmed trees, ignored bushes and an abundance of wild life. My lawn covers acres, literally. It is a serene piece of a combination wild life preserve and our own private front yard where neighbors bring their lawn chairs and we talk and drink Moscow Mules or whatever is handy that night. All this takes place according to some cosmically kept secret time table on our professionally kept lawn.
I see the ducks that seem to pair up, at least for a while. I have never been asked to witness a ceremony for any of them. Then there are the geese. They are producing frail little fuzzy goslings in record number these days. Hilarious, (think HI-LAR-EEE-OUS when reading) really! They walk and awkwardly wobble all at the same time. As they walk and wobble, they follow mama…closely. A good model for people who follow Jesus, I think. Who cares how you walk, just wobble and follow. It’s natural for God’s sake! There are squirrels galore. We are not supposed to feed them but I do anyway. That’s part of my wobbling. One of them comes right up to me, the Moscow Mule in my left hand and a peanut in my right. I’m not sharing the drink and he always heads for the peanut. We are a good pair that way.
Then there are the rabbits. I watched a pair of them tonight. They were openly frolicking, chasing each other in circles, jumping over one another. Then they would stop and catch their breath and start all over again until they both decided that there had been enough excitement in their fore-play and it was time! That’s why there are so many rabbits. That kind of fun and energy is bound to produce something good.
I guess that’s why the Celtic holiday, Beltane is acknowledged in the spring, why Easter has landed close by, and Pentecost has an address here as well. There is fire in this season. Love becomes ablaze, the gift of our sensuality merges with our spirituality and Life literally happens! Right out in front of God and everybody!
A few years ago I was having coffee at the Purple Door in Denver. I listened to these twenty and thirty something’s for quite a while. They all pretty much had two things in common. One, they all grew up in church. Two, they don’t go anymore. I had to ask. “Why?”, “Because the church is very good at keeping reality outside its doors. No one wants to talk about what’s really going on…” What was I supposed to say? Sometimes it is better to just shut up.
We don’t talk well about passions, addictions, failures, loneliness, indebtedness, and abortion. We don’t listen real well without holding judgment in our back pocket. And all the time, life is happening in our front yard, community is forming, and nature is leading the way…right here…in the city.
Father Scott Jenkins is a Founding Director of the Celtic Way. Read more about him Here.