The Refuge Garden
Directly to our east is an empty lot. We recently put a new fence around the area, but it is still barren - filled with rocks and dirt and dust.I’m going to be real, right now the space next door looks ugly. The thing about “ugly” is that it is often the result of what has happened, and is not reflective of a place’s true value. See, we just demolished the condemned building that had stood there at the beginning of the year and this is what was left when the snow melted. What that space will become is going to be beautiful: a place to live, learn and have fun as multiple communities join together.
It actually reminded me of one of our members, Angie. She has been through a lot: abuse, addiction, and health are really to name a few. She had built a way of life out of those different forms of brokenness, and she could function, but she would not say she was flourishing. There were times where life looked a lot like that condemned building next door. And just like it she would “board herself up” by isolating, only seeing her value through the lens of her brokenness and not seeing her true place as God’s beloved daughter.
In a lot of ways demolition is the first step to cultivation. We have to tear down those old structures to dig up the earth and make room for the truth to take root and flourish. We have seen this in Angie’s life. As she continues to know and be known in our community we see her growing and beginning to flourish.
Although we are still in the quiet phases of raising funds for Shechem’s construction we are ready for the first fruits of something beautiful to take root in that space. July 8th - 11th we will install The Refuge Garden at Shechem. This will be a space where you can learn more about the story and history of the biblical city of refuge and the future Community Center that will be built here.