Between the Cracks in the Asphalt

“Hope grows between cracks in the asphalt,” sings John Mark McMillan in his song “Between the Cracks.”

Hope grows between cracks in the asphalt.

Looking at the Christian calendar, we are in Ordinary Time. I’m finding that as much as I receive grace in the Christian seasons like Advent and Lent, I need this ordinary time to remind me that I need grace in the everyday moments. I daily need the words to tell me, remind me, of my salvation. I need the words that remind me I have received new life.

Isaiah 61:11 reads: “For as the earth brings forth its sprouts, and as a garden causes what is sown in it to sprout up, so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to sprout up before all the nations.”

A garden can burst forth from the broken ground. That’s a theme that has weaved in and out of everything that has happened in my life, in this past year.

God can redeem us. Flowers grow out of dirt.

The ordinary turns into something bursts out of the broken ground, the dirt. In our liturgical year, this Ordinary Time sets apart time where we intentionally think about what Christ means to the entirety of our lives—how every part of our life is enfolded in the grace of God.

I confess: sometimes I don’t have the words to pray. I don’t even know what to say. I go to church every Sunday because sometimes I have trouble formulating the words. The Church helps me find my voice. I need my weekly Easter in the midst of all the ordinary and all the day-to-day. I get discouraged and exhausted throughout all my comings and goings. I need to come to the Church each week and lay myself down on the altar and say, “God, I have no words.” The prayers and lyrics others offer up as worship become my words when I have no words. They become my prayers when I have no idea what to pray.

Ordinary time does not mean it is the “boring” time, but the counted time. The time in-between periods of the Christian calendar. It is the time where each week I come back in the middle of all the routine to be reminded that God is constantly, continually redeeming. I need this each week, each day. As the sun rises, I rise to the truth that I can walk in the new life I have received in Christ. That is the hope that is growing between the cracks in the asphalt.

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