I used to lose my glasses all the time. When I worked in Toronto it was not unusual that I would tour each office at least once a day to ask if I had left my glasses there. For Christmas the staff gave me one of those ‘stringy’ things to keep my glasses around my neck. A few years later I hit on a solution. I got my glasses made as bifocals but had a clear prescription on the top, so I could wear them all the time. This worked brilliantly until about 10 years ago.
I went in for a new pair of glasses, after backing over the last pair with my car, and I explained my brilliant scheme to the optometrist. I said “…with clear glass on the top.” To which he replied, “No, not anymore.” Since then I have been looking at the world through bifocals!
Today I see the world through a ‘bifocal’ view more and more. This was especially illustrated this week. In the Kingdom work which we are involved in at Street Hope, I have learned to appreciate the ‘already and the not yet’ aspects of the Kingdom of God. This bifocal view keeps me hopeful because of the King’s reign here and now, as His Kingdom breaks out in beautiful ways in our midst. It also keeps me active in the work of participating in bringing His Kingdom more and more into our community.
This week I have added a different bifocal view to my already complicated (messy) world. Like so many in Canada I spent hours shovelling snow this week. As I stood hip deep in snow massaging sore shoulders I wondered where I was going to put the latest addition to my drive way! My story is not unique and I am not really complaining (well maybe a little) but juxtaposed with this was the project which has been most on my mind lately!
I have had several meetings lately (two this week) about our Street Hope Community Garden project. We have this exciting vision of creating a high yield (and I do mean HIGH YIELD!) garden in Saint John’s South End. We have been given use of a half of a lot in the heart of the South End for this purpose. Like a snow ball rolling downhill this vision is catching momentum! We even have dreams that this may be an example for the many vacant lots which mar this community.
In Romans chapter one Paul talks about the powerful evidence Nature gives to the existence and character of God. Many folks, young and old, in the South End have not had the same opportunity to experience nature, as so many of us. They are at a distinct disadvantage! Our project is to help address this gross imbalance.
More and more people are volunteering and the plans are growing. We are counting on the funds coming in to provide for this endeavour. Because there is little soil on the land now and what is there may well be contaminated we will have to truck in soil and we will have to construct boxes to plant in. We will need mulch and on and on it goes. Our first year budget is $5,000.” If you would like to join us in this a cheque to Threshold Ministries with “Street Hope Garden” in the memo will be applied to this. Please do remember our ongoing needs as well. Our Christmas Blankets campaign was a great success but our regular support took a bit of a dip.