Lessons in the Park

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Ray and I went to a park on Saturday. It was frigid, rainy, and wonderful. In the park, cool spring water flows from a cave into a large, clear, pebble-bottomed pool.


Trout swim beneath the surface, . . .


. . . and ducks swim on top.


On Saturday, parents and children stood on the banks feeding them both. Water from the pool overflows into a rock-lined canal. Rock bridges span the canal.


The experience was sweet: crisp winter/spring air, rain forming circles on the surface of the water, . . .


. . . children on the playground, and the sparkling clear spring water exclaiming God’s creativity, His love of beauty, and His tender care.

Very recently Ray and I were in a conversation about serving and being served. I shared something Cora Beal had shared with me decades ago when I was in my twenties. Someone was trying to do something for me, and I was resisting. People can’t serve people, she told me, unless folks are willing to be served. Whoever this was we were talking to (and neither Ray nor I can remember) told us how blessed we were to have learned that so young.

Thinking about the pretty water we saw on Saturday, I thought about when Jesus taught about a cup of water, and I looked for the reference. To my surprise, one passage speaks not only of serving, but of being served.

Willingness to serve and to be served are important lessons to learn ourselves and to teach our children.

For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink
because of your name as followers of Christ,
truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.
Mark 9:41




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