Close to the Ground

Catalog, Collection / Wednesday, July 20th, 2016

Ordinary grace disguises itself in faded irises, traffic signs, convoluted “meetings for worship for business,” and the funny things small children say—the grace of God hidden in the ordinariness of life. This grace hovers close to the ground.

In her exploration of this grace, Nancy Thomas takes us on a personal journey with four sections. The first section, “Playing with Words,” celebrates language. In the second section, “Family Scrapbook,” Nancy celebrates memory, one of the ancient traditions of the Christian faith. The third section, “The Absurdity of Prayer,” focuses on the human side of our relationship with God. It notices the klutziness of being the church. It celebrates spirituality with dirt on its face and saints with sullied reputations. The final section, “Longing for Home,” affirms the hope of resurrection and new life. “Like Moses, I approach the thick darkness where God is, groping, breathless, ready.”

Grace was – is – ever present. And all things, those in the heavens and those closer to the ground, are from, through, and to God. Glory.

Close to the Ground

I choke on the word spirituality.
Not so much the reality
but the sometimes solitary focus
on the ethereal, mystical, and utterly
invisible. I lose my way in the mist.
My spirit hums closer
to the ground, often emerges
with mud on its face. It scrounges
truth among the mushrooms and
lichen. Peels off labels from
discarded tin cans, and there among
the roaches and other vagrants,
finds its theology in funky
configurations. Prefers single
syllable words and saints
with sullied reputations.
Loves it when Jesus plays
with little kids. Joins him
for hot dogs and Kool-Aid
afterwards. Laughs
during the prayer. Sometimes
to say “Amen.”