Summer has officially arrived!! Warmer weather, days on the beautiful lake, and incredible sunrises/sunsets abound!
This past Sunday was Children’s Sunday, and it was conducted on the deck outside, just like Children’s Sunday last June. Just like Rally Day last September. Just like the Christmas tree and winter clothing drive last December. While we continue to have more and more services and events outdoors, I think it’s very important to remember why it’s there and, while we’re at it, let’s talk about how it impacts history!
The deck outside was completed as part of an Eagle Scout project by Jonathan Steinbrecher, who deserves a great deal of thanks for that generous contribution to Marlborough Congregational Church! When we think about this gift, we need not only to consider that we have a deck, but what it is used for. It’s summer, and decks get a TON of use in the summer, right? Anyone who has ever sat in a chair on one knows it’s a relaxing space to sit back and enjoy the weather and the world around them. It’s a place where time slows down for just a little bit, and we can be more reflective.
Our deck is no different. Consider that the more we use it, the more people can slow down outside and (when the weather is nice) we can use this deck for other events. It sits at the top of the grassy hill, which immediately makes it easily seen from anywhere on the main parking lot, grass, hall, and you can even see it when you drive by the church. There is incredible historical significance which will come from this single act of kindness and hard work.
When Jonathan decided he was going to build this deck, what he did for us was far more important than just building a structure for everyone to enjoy. We are building traditions on this deck. We are setting precedents for ourselves where sermons may be preached outside in the world, in the fresh air. We will have a Christmas tree there again this season, and next, and the year after that. We are showing the future that in this church and in this time, we are not bound by our walls. Our sermons can be delivered out of doors as well as from the traditional pulpit.
Every new change brings opportunity. As we continue to come up with new ideas to use the beautiful deck for sharing, who knows what amazing opportunities we will open up to the community as well! Who knows the impact this deck will have as we roll into the future. How many new services or events will become annual traditions on the deck? Jonathan’s gift to Marlborough Congregational is an important part in our history. When we’re out there listening to sermons, music, and all of the great messages, it’s a great time to remember that the deck and the outdoors, like the church and pulpit, is a place for peaceful reflection. How we change…THAT is history.
So where will we go, and what will we plan for the deck coming up? I say, let’s get to work thinking about it! This deck and the messages which will flow from it will create new positive avenues for the Word to be delivered and for works to be done. It will redefine how we structure events and services, and it will positively impact how we can come together in fellowship. We can slow down for a minute, and we can listen to the birds, the laughter of children, the rustling of wind in the leaves, and more! After all, when you’re outside, the sky is literally the limit!
For now, I’m history!!