A Fountain

Lara Schopp Articles, Carla Aday, Senior Minister Blog

Deep and Wide
Deep and Wide
There’s a fountain flowing deep and wide.
Thirty-two years ago was my first official day on the job at Country Club Christian Church. I could not have imagined then the depth and width I would experience inside the contours of this beloved congregation.
I did not yet know about the wide expanse of mountain majesty one could see from the top of a hike to Sky Pond with a group of church friends in Rocky Mountain National Park during Christian Community Camp. I did not yet know how walking down a dusty narrow road in Nicaragua amongst the poorest people of the world could open up one’s vista to know the wideness of God’s mercy. Unknown to me was the pliable elasticity of the human heart that God can stretch so wide inside of me that it easily embraces four generations of one family sitting shoulder to shoulder in our old wooden pews.
With each passing year, I have fallen more deeply in love with this congregation and become increasingly awed by the ways God moves among us, pushing us to love the world that God so loved in ever widening ways.
After coming to work here as a single woman, I got married, had children and step-children, watched my son be baptized and my grandchildren be dedicated in our sanctuary. I got to be on the receiving end of your love when I went through cancer of my own and a few year’s later, my husband’s journey with cancer. Sitting next to you in the pews, I listened to some of our nation’s brilliant voices: poet, novelist and environmental sage Wendell Berry; feminist catholic theologian Joan Chittister; Harvard scholar and preacher Peter Gomes; just to name a few. The faith that was mostly in my intellect took up residence in the depth of my soul. The tears we shed together at funerals and next to hospital beds carved within me a deeper respect for the human person.
All this is to say that as I began to ponder my 32nd anniversary on our church staff, I couldn’t stop humming that song from childhood church camp:
Deep and Wide
Deep and Wide
There’s fountain flowing deep and wide.
We are not a perfect church. I am not a perfect pastor. But the God of all creation has been flowing deep and wide within us for a very long time. The wideness of God’s mercy animates us. The depth of God’s amazing love enlivens us. I know this, not just because I have been honored to serve as your pastor but because I have been graced by God’s deep and wide spirit flowing into my own life through your beauty and compassion.
Grace and peace,