On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what concern is that to me and to you? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to them, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. He said to them, “Now draw some out, and take it to the person in charge of the banquet.” So they took it. When the person in charge tasted the water that had become wine and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), that person called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now.” Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee and revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him.
The photo captures a beautifully designed (probably from the 70s) carpet at Cedarkirk, our presbytery’s camp and conference center. Most of the carpet in this building has been replaced long ago, but there is one section that still holds this glimpse to the past. It is a reminder of all that Cedarkirk has been in my life and in the lives of so many.
It is a special place apart from the noise and busyness of daily life; where one can encounter God as well as grow closer to one’s brothers and sisters in Christ. For me personally, it is a place where I grew up discovering the joy of Christian community, a place where I met my wife, a place where I discerned a call to ministry, and a place where I faithfully served God for nearly 15 years. Each year, Cedarkirk is a special place for thousands who come to encounter God in new and transforming ways. While there are definitely moments of calm and quiet in the tranquil, holy spaces of camp, there are also plenty of spaces where God is encountered in the joy of loud singing and exuberant laughter. The God we serve is one not just of quiet reverence and solemn prayer, but also a God who kept the party going at a wedding in China and enjoys the company and fellowship of others. This is what I love about camp and our fellowship gatherings at the church. We can come together and truly enjoy God and one another as we celebrate, laugh, and play. Today, I invite you to look for times to have fun.
Loving God, You are with us at all times and invite us into the fullness of life as Your people. We thank You for the gift of joy, laughter, and play. Strengthen in us a desire to have a good time and to find new life and energy in times of fun today. Amen.