For who has despised the day of small things?
–Zechariah 4.10 (Robert Alter translation)
When we think about Lent the concept of delight isn’t the first thing we typically think about. But Lent is about changing our perspective, and finding delight is all about seeing the people around us and our situation with a different perspective. Delight is about seeing abundance over deficit, opportunity over stagnation, relationship over isolation, and joy over happiness. Delight is moving beyond our expectations of how things should be to open ourselves up to the surprise of what we encounter. Delight is about taking time, avoiding the need to rush, moving beyond urgency and hurry, in order to be present in the experience right in front of us. This Tuesday we’ll encounter this concept of delight as we experience a chance to connect with people looking with us for hope.
Hope doesn’t have to come in big ways, but by little things, little gestures, the ‘day of small things’ as the prophet Zechariah put it. Those who ignore, disregard, and dismiss humble gestures or the very first steps of any opportunity don’t appreciate how important a small gesture, a humble beginning can be; great things are done by the day of small things. Hope begins with a willingness to listen, to show compassion, and to offer our most precious commodity: time.
This Tuesday we’ll meet at Trinity Commons at 4 pm and walk (or carpool if it’s raining) over to UAB hospital where our friend the Rev. Malcolm Marler with introduce us into a way of offering hope and sharing in delight with others. We’ll offer Prayers to Go at UAB hospital, which is a way of offering a prayer for someone who needs it, and find the power of delight in connection in a time of anxiety and uncertainty. Prayers are always welcome, and being a part of this will probably take you out of your comfort zone and that’s ok. Lent is about seeing with new eyes, and delight comes when we slow down and engage in the experience. Prayer is a small thing but from this willingness to connect and name our needs before God we’ll find delight, offer hope, and experience a whole new way of seeing the world.