I am a great fan of the Liturgical Seasons, the way they weave through the year leading us out of one season into another, they are a roller-coaster ride of highs and lows, great celebrations full of razzamatazz and quieter times for contemplations. Currently we are in the long haul of Ordinary Time, Sundays after Trinity, Sundays of Pentecost, or Sunday of Proper, whatever you choose to call this time. The fact that this season can have so many ways to name its Sundays is maybe why it can seem a bit adrift.
We celebrate God the Son, his coming in Advent, his arrival through Christmas, his manifestation to all during Epiphany, the purpose in his coming in God’s great unfolding story in the 40 days of Lent, his self giving sacrifice of absolute love during Holy Week, his resurrection and 40 days of appearances before his ascension. We have a brief flirtation with the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Sunday, the Trinity on the subsequent Sunday and then we turn to a gradual build up to Christ the King when creation is drawn into its fulfillment. Of course the reality is that there is a bleeding and blending of those themes throughout the year, yet somehow this season can seem somewhat minor compared to the others, why is that? Maybe because even if you name the Sundays as of Pentecost at first glance there seems no overarching theme, although God the Creator is appears increasingly as an imposed one.
While driving through the beautiful Galloway Forrest I spied this and quickly turned in so that a photograph could be grabbed. This is a bridge season, spanning the time between Pentecost and Advent, bridging the days between the sending of the Holy Spirit at the beginning of our Christian journey and the Reign of Christ the King at the other end of it. Strong and secure throughout the years and despite any changes happening around it, something easily taken for granted or indeed missed, however, when we look, really look it holds a collection of beautiful gems. Maybe this season does not hold the spectacular wonder of choirs of angels over a gentle hillside, or the radiance of an empty tomb, or the wonder of gifts from afar, or the bitter sweet pain of nails and thorn but there is a beauty which sneaks up and can wrap itself around you with gentle revelations of the powerful wonder of the ordinary.