Thursday, July 12, 2007


Railroads are by their nature surrounded by wasteland.

Their roadbeds are not usually considered pretty, their switching areas, rusting signals and overhead electric lines are eyesores, and the trains that travel them are loud, discoraging the close encroachment of the neat lawns and dwellings of residential suburbia.

And the odd angles that the rail-beds make with roads, property lines, and each other create wedges of land that are virtually impossible to put to any use, even if someone wanted to do so.

And so they are left fallow, ...and life finds them and springs up.

The odd-shaped wedge behind the train station where I wait in the morning teams with life and is laden with ripening wild fruit;

raspberries and blackberries and grapes and choke-cherries, rose-hips and milkweed, and wild herbs and seeds - eaten by silly baltimore orioles (singing 'oh-boyeee!') and robins and sparrows and mocking-birds and chipmunks. ...and these are likely just the bold ones, who dare show themselves while I am there.

The amount of life per square foot is amazing. And to create this beauty, we just had to give it space. We abandoned it. We ignored it. We left it alone.

This was a waste-land, useless.

Sometimes we feel that way about ourselves, about parts of our lives, about people and places. But perhaps they need just a little space, some light, and a bit of water. Just a wee opportunity for growth and creation; time and space for God to enter in, and fill the wasteland with life.

May God enter all the abandoned places in our lives, all our waste-lands, and make them bloom and be fruitful.

And may we be wise enough to allow space for life, to leave spaces for the wild magic of God to take place.

Locust Eater

Wasteland Pictures
Seeing Truth in the Wasteland
God’s Sheep are Confused

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