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Meadowbrook Country Club
2149 N. Green Bay Road
Racine, WI 53405

We are currently worshipping in-person Sundays at 10 a.m. and via Zoom

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Renewal Through Restoration

We hear a lot about what the pandemic has done to the economy, to people’s finances, to our education system, and to our health care system. And all those things are real and scary, and yes restoration is needed (or maybe renovation is needed) for many of our systems. But we rarely hear anyone talk about what this year has done to our souls. I believe our souls are also in desperate need of restoration.

Karyn Kedar tells a story about when she was little and her mother would step out of the front door, straighten her shoulders, button the top of her coat tight around her neck, take out her driving gloves and pronounce, “It’s raw out today.”  For years Karyn experienced this little ritual and yet wasn’t ever quite sure what temperature “raw” was. Sometimes it was unbearably cold and dry, sometimes it was damp and drizzly, but sometimes it was a perfectly fine day.

It took Karyn until years later when she was an adult to understand that when her mother said, “It’s raw out today” that it didn’t mean it was raw outside, she meant it was raw inside. Meaning it was one of those difficult, vulnerable days when one feels tender to the core, sapped of energy, and perhaps even likely to melt down or snap for no reason at all.

There’s a lot of “raw outside” going on these days. But how do we go about caring for the “raw” we feel, the healing of our souls, the restoration of our souls?

Matthew’s gospel tells the story about two blind people who won’t stop shouting at Jesus, as he and his entourage are walking by, to take pity on them. Jesus stops the whole crowd of people, summons the blind folks and asks them what they want him to do for them. They said, “We want our eyes to be opened.” Jesus touches their eyes, gives them their sight back and they follow him 

If we use this story as a model for restoration, the first thing we’re asked to do is recognize and name what we need restored. I think it’s likely that all of our souls have pieces that need to be restored to bring us to greater wholeness. Just in the last 6 months we’ve all had loss, lack, regret, hurt, struggle. Too often we just push through day after day instead of acknowledging that our souls are raw and need healing. 

Restoration can look like a lot of things: validation, forgiveness, healed or renewed relationships, health, purpose, ritual, structure, compassion, or finding our spiritual center again. 

Once we’ve named it, then this scripture says we need to be tenacious about it. Those blind beggars were considered unclean by their Jewish community, were outcast, were marginalized, and were usually silenced. But this time they didn’t give up even when the crowd tried to shush them.  

So, be relentless! If we need peace and quiet, a break from the chaos, then carve out that time. If a friendship needs to be healed, then we need to do all we can to bring about that healing. If our health is suffering because of something we have or haven’t done – eat well, exercise, see the doctor – then we need to get back on track. 

If the restoration we need is inner work, perhaps it is time to find a spiritual director or a therapist to help. Perhaps we need to work on self-forgiveness, self-compassion and self-understanding. Sometimes we’re more gentle, kind and understanding with others than we are with ourselves.

We’re called to care for our souls, for the restoration of our souls, so whatever we experience in life is not callously brushed off, but is allowed to touch our hearts. And we need to care for our souls so that what happens in the world is met by the light and beauty of our true selves.

Love & Light!