Today's #AdventWord is Earth
In this time of year, my thoughts generally do not go to the earth, as the earth is largely hard, and seemingly impenetrable. However, serving as I do, as the rector of a church in Philadelphia in the time of COVID, I have found myself taking on new tasks, not usually assigned to me, or mentioned in seminary. For example, I have taken on the tasks of opening gravesites in our columbarium for the placement of cremains. Putting the shovel to the ground, after carefully measuring out the placement for the gravesite, is both a sort of "everyday" and "normal" thing to do, and also quite "awesome" and "intimidating." Of course, digging a hole with a shovel is something that most of us learned to do in some way shape or form when we were quite young, in the backyard, or the sandbox, or the beach. But, to put the shovel to the ground, into the hard earth, to make a final resting place, is profound.
Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust.
Remember that you are dust.
Keeping the earthiness alive in our daily lives means that we acknowledge both the life that comes from the earth, in plants, in vegetables, in fruits, in trees, and also the fact that that is where we finally will find our rest here on earth.