We often talk about hope in early spring, when new things are about to burst into bloom; or at Advent, as we wait—hope-filled—for the Incarnation. The last week of July is not usually the time we think of it, is it? We are lingering with the gifts of summer (or winter, for our southerly friends!)—and, if we continue with the garden metaphor, perhaps still attending to where some weeding might be needed, where some old (good) growth might need to be removed to make way for new, harvesting and enjoying (and perhaps sweltering). But what if this, too, is an essential time for the cultivating of hope, this in-between Easter and Advent—what is known in the liturgical calendar as “Ordinary Time”? What if being nourished by the gifts of this season are particularly helpful in growing hope in the next, as things shift and grow? How might the “stuff” (whether delightful gifts or smelly…fertilizer) of this season be the necessary compost for next year’s crop? What might it look like for you to particularly lean into whatever this season is holding for you—as an act of cultivating hope, letting the nutrients soak in deep, noticing what is…more difficult to appreciate…and letting it, too, be something that nourishes you along the way? How might God be inviting you to attend to the gifts of ordinary time as a way of cultivating hope?

Posted by Jamie Bonilla at 2023-07-25 13:46:17 UTC