Every fall my congregation takes an annual retreat, spending the weekend at Camp Friedenswald in Michigan. Every year Steve Shantz introduces the children to the Survival Game, every year there's a talent show full of gifts of music and friendly chuckles, every year (if the weather cooperates) there's singing and a campfire at the Hollow. And every year -- if the weather cooperates -- I make a pilgrimage around to the spring on the other side of the lake.
It's a lovely hike through the woods, around to the spot where clear water comes bubbling up into a small sandy basin, less than a foot across, and then flows away towards the lake, turning the rocks a rusty color due to the high iron content in the water.
The camp has upgraded the steps down to the spring and added a bridge across the stream. Last Saturday afternoon several of us sat and chatted there, basking in the unusually warm weather and watching the spring bubble, and the sunlight scribbling mysterious messages on the water. We played too, making boats out of nutshells and sending them downstream, where they all promptly ran aground on mats of fallen leaves. There's a lot of water flowing though, so perhaps one day they'll make it to the lake and float off to unknown adventures.
"Instructions for living a life:
Tell about it."
Mary Oliver in "Sometimes"
I've taken on a prayer practice of looking for the moments of light in each day, whether actual or metaphorical, and then writing or posting photos of what I find.