One of the places we go on vacation every year is Edisto Beach, SC. My parents went in with a lot of other families and bought a portion of an off-beach house there when I was in high school. It is a neat island. There is a state park there with natural beaches and a wild bird preserve. Almost every time we go there, we see dolphins swimming by and pelicans diving in for fish. It has a huge marsh and intricate creek system. They have one grocery store, and a few restaurants and shops. It’s a kind of beach town that has a mix of residents and commercial, and we have a great time being there.
One of my favorite parts of Edisto is the sea turtles. The whole island decided that it wanted to be part of the solution to reinvigorating the sea turtle population. So, no lights are allowed on the beach at night. There are volunteers, “turtle watchers,” who stay up all night shepherding and monitoring sea turtle nests. Sometimes, if you are lucky, you get to see them “boil,” which is when a sea turtle nest hatches, and all the baby turtles “boil over” the sand and make their way to the sea.
I like it because I do like sea turtles, but also because I love to see a whole community pulling together in one direction. To have a purpose, and everyone learns all about it, and works together for the common good. Sea Turtles are easy because they are cute and interesting. Life is harder and more nuanced, and it doesn’t seem like we can agree on what needs to be done.
At our church, we have a lot of different people with different minds about what we should be doing. However, I think if we can come together on a purpose, and all make efforts in the same direction, it will be transformational. So, what is our Sea Turtle? That will be a focus of ours during our one-room Sunday school in August, and in starting our mid-week ministries again. What is the thing that we can all agree on, this is our purpose?