Guest Post by Birdie Shawker, Communications Coordinator
One thing I’ve learned on the road ahead is I love houses of worship. They fascinate me. I have no special affinity for any denomination or faith tradition. I am simply interested in spaces that are set apart for the divine and what they look like. The Buddhist shrine room, the Muslim Mosque, the Jewish Temple, the Christian Sanctuary, they all appeal to me. It is difficult for me to overcome the temptation to rubberneck at these sorts of things, not traffic accidents, when I’m on the road.
I’ve been noticing a little church on my commute for years now, painted bright yellow with a little cross on the top, so rustic and charming.
Recently a new building went up on their campus. That is a big deal for a church. I’ve been so happy for this church, even though I don’t think I know a soul that attends there. What I do know is the painstaking decision making, vision, diligent work, and financial sacrifices people take on to give “just a little more” so that a church can expand.
This past week, I noticed the church on my commute even had a nice new sign. Under the church name it read, “Heating and Air Conditioning.” I was puzzled as to why a church would put that on their sign at first,…I even laughed a little.
Then it dawned on me. Anyone who attended that church, from here on out, stood on the shoulders of giants. Giants that withstood sweltering heat and freezing cold. Giants that worked to create a sacred space for future generations where they could worship comfortably. I was dazzled and inspired.
As we prepare to celebrate our now mortgage-free Unity Heights Building, I realized something. I, too, stood on the shoulders of giants. And it was vitally important to recognize and honor those giants!
I also wondered where that phrase “standing on the shoulders of giants” came from. The common thought is the phrase came from Sir Isaac Newton, but the notion predates him. The 12th century theologian and author John of Salisbury wrote this on the subject of thinkers with vision that came before us:
“We are like dwarfs sitting on the shoulders of giants. We see more, and things that are more distant, than they did, not because our sight is superior or because we are taller than they, but because they raise us up, and by their great stature add to ours.”
That is why my sincere hope is that our community will come out in great numbers on May 19. At our 11:00 a.m. service and immediately afterwards, we will recognize and celebrate this momentous community accomplishment. Please RSVP by clicking here.
And if you happen to know one of those giants whose shoulders we stand upon, let them know how you feel. Let them know you appreciate the vision we now enjoy, because they raised us up to greater heights.
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