03 March 2008

Joy in a Purple Bus

I have ridden on a variety of buses over the past 10 years. In Europe, travel by Coach (i.e. a really nice bus) is a popular way for groups to get around or see sights, etc. I stepped into one this past weekend and thought I had landed in Barney's playhouse. The entire bus had a purple motif - from the voilet seats to the deep purple upholstered walls - everything had a purple hue. A bit of a shock at first, but I got used to it...after all, it was just another bus.

This past weekend we attended (and helped to host) a Diaconal Conference for the Northern European United Methodist Churches. [Diaconal work encompasses the work of the Deacon, which in the UMC most often means working to feed the hungry, visit the sick and imprisoned, assist the poor, etc... for an example look in the Bible in Acts chapter 6 when the church chose seven people to look after the needs of the brothers and sisters.] On Friday we took a group of 50 people to see one of the Hope Center buildings. [The Hope Center is a home for vulnerable single girls (literally, as they are usually around 15 years-old when they arrive) who want to keep their babies, yet they have no support network. Most of the girls got pregnant while in an orphanage or by being ravaged on the street...]

We took the girls and their babies with us to the other Hope Center building - on board the 'normal' purple bus. One girl stepped onto the bus with her baby and her eyes grew as wide as saucers. "Wow - this is soo pretty. This is sooo cool." This was also the nicest bus on which she had ever traveled.

I started to think about how many things I take for granted - a been there, seen that, done that mentality. I'm thankful that I took time to marvel at the double rainbow later in the day, along with the burning sunset ringed by rain clouds... I need to take time to wonder and marvel every day - even to see joy in a purple bus.

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