We are in our new “digs,” as someone happily described the setting last Sunday — gathering, celebrating, and worshipping downtown in the Historic 512 Ballroom at the Center for Transforming Lives! Our first Sunday, June 10, was a great start with over 200 people present, great music and a truly inspiring celebration! The response is overwhelmingly positive and excited about the future for eleven:eleven in its new temporary home at the Historic 512!
And this Sunday we continue to explore themes of openness, inclusiveness, and curiosity as paths into a deeper and more joyful experience of faith and community. I hope you can join us in the new “digs.”
I’ll leave you with a story that hints at the importance of curiosity for the kind of faith we find in Jesus’ kingdom parable of the man who stumbled upon the treasure in a field. And the story begs this question: What if knowing one’s God-given purpose in life is more a matter of cultivating a lifetime of curiosity than discovering one’s true passion?
A farmer on his deathbed worried about the fate of his two apathetic, lazy sons. But he had an idea. Near his final hours, he called his sons to come to his bedside and drew them in close. “I am soon to leave this world,” he whispered. “I want you to know that I have left a treasure for you hidden in one of my fields. Dig carefully and well, and you will surely find it. I only ask that you share what you find.”
This had his sons’ curiosity piqued and they begged him to tell them exactly where he’d buried it, so they wouldn’t miss it. But with his last breath, he simply reminded them, “Dig carefully and persistently, and you will find it. And it will more than take care of you and others.”
Soon after the sons had buried their father, they took up shovels and pitchforks, along with their feverish curiosity, and began to turn over the soil in the field. It had not been tilled for some time. They dug and dug until they had turned over the first field twice. After several days of digging, they had found nothing. But they decided since the field was so well dug up they might as well plant grain as their father had done. And the crop that next season grew well for them. And while it grew, they remembered their father had two fields. So, their hope and curiosity still impassioned, they began digging the second field in search of the buried treasure. After days of digging, again they found nothing. But the field was tilled, so they planted a second crop.
This went on for several seasons of digging, searching, planting, and harvesting until the sons had learned the art of farming and grown accustomed to the cycles of the seasons and the harvested rewards of curiosity and daily labor. By that time their digging and farming had earned each of them enough money to live quite happily and to share their harvest with others. It was only some years later they reflected on their years of searching for treasure and realized the treasure that was left for them was always there — awaiting curiosity and persistent digging.
Where do you find moments in your life inviting you to dig a little deeper, to wander beyond familiar space and into new, open fields of possibilities? We live and move and have our being in the sacred grounding of God’s presence. What might we find in this new field?
This Sunday in eleven:eleven
downtown at the Historic 512
“open, inclusive, inquisitive”
rev. tom mcdermott
with the revolution band and the
music of peter mayer, tom petty, and rich mullins
Associate Pastor of eleven:eleven