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The Art of Noticing


Dear Evergreen Family:


I have to admit, I’m not the best “noticer” in the world. I can go someplace new, stay there for an hour, leave, be asked what color the carpet was, and reply, “The floor was carpeted?” No, I’m just not the best noticer in the world.


Our current situation has given us a lot of time to notice things. We’ve noticed things about our homes that we never saw before. We’ve noticed things about our family members that we never realized before. We’ve noticed things about ourselves that weren’t clear before all this. Some of this might be a rude awakening, and some of it, hopefully most of it, is appreciation.


Evergreen Church is quiet these days. It’s usually a bustling place all week long. Between our preschool, ESL program, home groups, community events, and administrative work, there are people in and out all the time. There is life in every nook and cranny. Since mid-March, this has all gone away. It’s very quiet these days.


However, I’m noticing and appreciating. When I walk through the front door, the first thing I see, to my right, is an amazing Lego replica of our church building. Seemingly hundreds of pieces. A striking resemblance. It was designed by one of our very faithful members and assembled by our middle school youth. This was a project of love and solidarity. It says a lot about who we are.


If I pause in the silence and turn my head to the left, I’ll see an unassuming bucket on the floor labeled “DC Urban Mission.” It’s there to collect items. Those items are carried into the city, along with a lot of love, to make friends with those who are down and out. It takes a big heart to spend a day like this. It says a lot about who we are. If I step through the inner glass doors, I almost bump into the name tag carousel. The names bring your faces to mind, and I realize even more poignantly how much I miss you. I imagine how you’re serving God wherever you are. I can’t wait to see you again.


Looking straight ahead, I can see our fellowship table, and I appreciate how great connections are formed around food. I remember the Last Supper, and how true that was there.


A quick glance from where I’m standing reveals a Men’s Fellowship Group invitation poster, a preschool photo collage, a “Birthday Bag Donations Box,” and much more. Each of these items tells a story of its own. 


If you’ve noticed, I’ve taken only about three steps inside the front door so far. I could spend the whole day looking at all the evidence of God’s grace that fills our house of worship. Evergreen is an amazing community. I hope you’re noticing that along with me these days.


Jesus said to his follower Thomas, “Put your finger here. Look at my hands. Put your hand into my side. No more disbelief. Believe!” (John 20:27).


May God bless you all.


Your Fellow Minister in Christ,








Mark


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