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The Gift of the Dandelion Seed Tattoo

“The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”  John 3:8

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Grace and peace to you as the Fall settles in and we find begin to find ourselves in the new rhythms and routines of the school year.

I wanted, again, to express my gratitude to all who made this year’s Fall Kick-Off Carnival special.  It was a delight for me to enjoy with my family—including having the opportunity for Lucy and me to get matching tattoos!  First, we both got matching glitter tattoos of ladybugs on our arms from the artists from The Painted Turtle and then she and I were given henna tattoos by one of Augustana’s extremely talented artists, Holly Gutzmer.  Lucy got a kitten on her bicep.  When Holly chose a couple images for me to pick from that I might like, one image she showed me was a single dandelion seed dangling by the thinnest of threads from the puff that catches the wind and carries it to its final destination.

It was the perfect Autumn image.  As I’ve glanced down at this (temporary) dandelion seed tattoo these past few days, it’s preached to me of the promise of new life carried quietly on the wind only after the dandelion flower had enjoyed its time in full bloom and given way to the soft, feathery globe of seeds, awaiting their opportunity to be lifted, planted, and begin life again.

The hope of new life held in the midst of death.  The beauty of dying and rising, of giving way to the winds of God by which we’re carried, of anticipating the new ground into which we will put down roots and again rise.  Holly’s gift for henna tattooing has spoken to me of some of the deep themes interwoven between our Christian faith and the Autumn season—and for her willingness to share her gift so freely—I have deep gratitude—thank you, Holly.

As we enter the season of Harvest, may we all glimpse the unique gifts God has given us to enrich the lives of others and may we share in their abundance together.

In Christ’s Service,

Pastor Ben