Revelations: Moments of pure Scripture
I approached the Coleto Creek waters Sunday morning with sleep crust still gathered in the corner of one eye.
The sun was creeping over the horizon, extending an orange strip of light across the darkened creek.
As I wiped clean the corners of my eye (with a finger I noticed at that moment was missing the attached acrylic nail), I exhaled a painful this-is-too-early breath and made a slow-paced effort to join the crowd gathering at the base of the bottom of the hill.
My sour-grapes early-morning attitude was in high gear that morning.
With every step toward the water, I was getting sticks and dirt in my shoes, forcing me to pause and empty my flats.
I'm never thrilled about working on holidays, especially when it is a religious holiday. I was already in a bad mood. I also wasn't able to fall asleep the night before, so I was tired and cranky and in need of strong coffee. It was a delightful combination for Easter Sunday.
But something changed as I approached the creek.
I stood back and watched the crowd, modestly dressed in jeans and T-shirts. Many were singing along with a three-part band, playing acoustic worship in the early morning hours.
Lawn chairs were strewn on the grass; others sat on blankets.
There was a faint smell of fresh coffee brewing nearby, and the sunrise was probably one of the loveliest I'd seen in years.
I knew I was going to have to approach the crowd and begin my reporter shift. But I hesitated for a moment and allowed myself to take in the serene Easter morning scene.
For years, I've asked the Lord to show me moments of pure Scripture.
That is moments in life that you know would be universal across time, culture and geography.
Because of this, I'm purposeful in my attempts to remain outside the traditions of church and southern Christian culture and follow Christ in a way that I hope resembles the time he spent with the Twelve Apostles.
It's a tricky philosophy to explain to fellow Christians sometimes because it's so easy for our culture to confuse or blend the traditions of our culture, geography and church history with the fundamental message of Jesus.
Every Christian culture worldwide has their own unique set of "Christian changeables," (reference points, celebrations, drinks they can and can't consume, attire they wear or can't wear, food they can and can't eat, etc.), but our theological baselines are all the same. That's what unites us with our international brothers and sisters - those moments of pure Scripture.
Moments like the sunrise service at Coleto Creek.
It's so rare in the 21st century that I get to see these moments of pure Scripture.
And what better day to experience pure Scripture than in the predawn hour of Easter Sunday?
It definitely got the sleep out of my eyes.
Jennifer Preyss is the faith reporter for the Victoria Advocate. You can reach her at 361-580-6535, firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @jenniferpreyss.