Dear friends are arriving tomorrow, friends who have been part of my life for years and years. This will be their first trip to the island, and I want them to see it in its best light. I hope the beach will be clean, the weather warm and sunny, the flowers in bloom, the house shiny and clean, the meals delicious. And yet I know note of this will matter to them; they are coming to be with us and share time. All trimmings are secondary. When I was on the Worship Committee at church, I sometimes worried about all the trappings of the service—were the altar cloths correct? Were the Communion elements properly placed and covered? Did I have enough bread/wafers and juice? Was the altar rail in the right position? And yet I knew full well that what really mattered is that each of us was about to share a holy meal with God; nothing else mattered, not really. Forgive me, Lord, when I become so fixated on the trappings that I overlook the substance. Please help me serve you and concentrate on what is important. Amen.
When I examine the beach sand carefully, I notice its constituent parts—small rock crystals, shards of ground shell, and tiny bits of beach detritus. Everything undergoes transformation! The fragments of