One of the songs I found myself singing in the shower a lot this summer was Coldplay’s “Sky full of stars.”
I’d even catch myself watching the video and singing along when I felt grumpy. So it should not surprise you that out of today’s readings, it was our Epistle
that caught my attention and the image of that sky full of stars that make up the descendants of Abraham.
If you haven’t seen the Coldplay video, Chris Martin, decked out as if he is a one-man band, is wandering the streets of Sydney almost certainly singing about his true love; as he sings, a crowd begins to gather and grow. What sticks out in the video is as Chris walks along, he meets up with his bandmates, who are also wearing the accoutrements of a one man band. By the end of the video, band and crowd are all joyfully singing together.
It’s a great parallel to today’s Epistle. Abraham and Sarah, at the very least, thought they would be finishing out life as duet, and I supposed at times each of them felt like a solo act. Infertility does that to a person. Despite the fact that procreation takes two, when it doesn’t happen, each half tends to blame him or herself. It’s a lonely journey at times, not just when we are talking about the physical problem of infertility, but when we also look at childlessness in general. Parts of this journey are shared by the never-married, some same-sex couples, those whose children have been snatched from them by untimely death, and those whose children, for whatever reason, are absent in the long term sense.
For that matter, “infertility” can take on a broader sense–not just as it relates to childbearing. We can feel infertile in the workplace, at home, and yes, even at church. In fact, it can be exquisitely difficult when we feel infertile in our spiritual life, because we feel that illusion of “but it’s supposed to be all good!” hanging over our heads.
Faith, however, is a little like Chris Martin in the Coldplay video. We might be pounding the streets a while, but if we start singing about our true love–God–it’s bound to attract a crowd sooner or later. Sure, at first the crowd might simply think we’re crazy, and are there solely for curiosity’s sake, but give it enough time, some others carrying the burden of being a one-person band are bound to show up and sing along. We might even discover we are part of of a sky full of stars–with such a heavenly view.
When is a time that you thought your situation was a solo act, but discovered you were part of a very large band?
Maria Evans, a surgical pathologist from Kirksville, MO, is a grateful member of Trinity Episcopal Church and a postulant to the priesthood in the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri. She occasionally finds time to write about the obscurities of life, medicine, faith, and the Episcopal Church on her blog, Kirkepiscatoid.
Image “Constellation Fornax, EXtreme Deep Field” by NASA;