At the beginning of July, my husband and I came home from a few days away to discover that robins had built a nest in a hanging planter outside our garden room window. They seemed surprised to see us moving around on the other side of the glass, but the mother proceeded to lay an egg every day until there were four, and then she sat, and we watched. We went away again, for a couple of weeks, and when we came home there were four gaping mouths in the nest and two weary parents flying back and forth, feeding them tidbits of bugs and worms. They’re growing fast, starting to jostle for space in the nest, getting ready to try their wings.
There have been a couple of human babies born this month, too. Last fall one of my Wellspring group discovered that she was pregnant and we all celebrated with her, relieved to discover why she’d been so tired. Her baby boy was born a month early, on July 13, and we’re all thrilled. And Jen, our associate minister, Wellspring mentor and inspiration, is now a parent. Their Henry arrived, happily, on July 21, to much joy. The pictures of these two newborns make my newest granddaughter, now six months old, seem positively grown up – Evelyn moves herself around, burbles and laughs, eats cereal and bananas with gusto. Since the beginning, she’s been her own person with distinctive characteristics and preferences, and I love watching her grow.
Our new Wellspring groups are about to hatch as well. We conceived a sizeable list of prospects through several orientation programs which generated a lot of interest, especially after Jen spoke about the program during Sunday morning worship. We’re offering two groups this year, one morning and one evening, and people have sorted themselves out into one or the other. We’re pretty well set with seven or eight people in each group, about the most we can have and still give everyone adequate time to speak and listen during the small group sessions. In September, we’ll have our initial full-day retreat, when we find out what disctinctive characteristics these groups will have. We start with telling our stories, our spiritual histories, and begin to get to know each other. We’ll continue developing through the year, building trust and appreciation for one another as we explore our spiritual journeys together. Each group takes on a unique personality and becomes its own entity, and I’m eager to see what develops this year. We’ll grow together until it’s time to fly out of the nest on our wings of faith. May we hold one another in love and respect through the process.