Dedicating a Natural Wonder

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We didn’t always know that we would come to this time and place where we get to dedicate your life to God.  We didn’t always know that we would be able to make promises to love you, teach you, comfort you, and strengthen you.

What we did know is that the human life is full of limitations.  The human body, miraculous as it is, practices imperfection and demands extra care.  Knowledge comes only in pieces.  The future is always elusive.  Our hands can only offer so much help when the wound is unreachable.  Our prayers can only say the same petition for so long until time questions persistence.

Though knowledge struts around as the most desired prize, we should not be fooled by all its (false) promises.  “If only we knew,” I had thought.  But knowledge would not have brought peace or hope.  Knowledge is only illusion.  It is perceived acquisition of life’s mysteries.  Acquisition detaches truth from its roots and leaves us only a log who brings only understanding of what has been.

To be connected to the Source of Life, wild and unpredictable, is far better than to cut it off to dissolve mystery.  Connection to the Source means surprises are still possible for all is not in our control.

Over all these years, I have no idea how we lived all those days without this joy of holding you.  To watch your face brighten when we stand before you is like witnessing a natural wonder.  You are a natural wonder that reveals a powerful glimpse of the Source.

This form of revelation brings not explanation or understanding.  Those such things would blur your true identity – divine gift that is not to be understood but only received.

Your presence does not “solve” infertility.  Your life does not necessarily help anyone else struggling with conception.  This, too, is veiled gift.  For even with medical experts, financial resources, and ritualized procedures, the human life is not a maneuver of human accomplishment.  Human life is birthed from us, but never by us.

I admit that I still carry frustration from the long journey.  Watching friends suffer over the years can take a toll on hope.   Your arrival doesn’t wipe all that away.  It just confuses it in the most amazing way.  Utter joy that comes from devastation pushes me into foreign land where I remember that Life is not mine to understand but only to live.

As we walk you around the sanctuary on Sunday, God’s people will witness God’s natural wonder – the new human life alive in our midst.  We will be invited to receive the awe that grips the throat and will not let you go until you feel all of it.  We may feel it especially true this Sunday, but it is true with all baby dedications.  The idea that any human life is guaranteed is mere human arrogance.

May we be good stewards of all God’s natural wonders.  Before the human life, may we always pause and give thanks, kneeling in gratitude to the Source who provides just enough for the time at hand.

Thanks be to God for you.
Thanks be to God for these days we have to hold you and these promises we get to make.
Thanks be to God for all that we do not understand, from which comes not just pain but also miracle.

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