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Showing posts from June, 2016

Love/Fear

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This upcoming Sunday's Gospel has similar themes to last week's Gospel reading. In my lectio with both passages, the same idea stuck out. Last week it was the words, "he sent messengers ahead of him." This week it is the words, "...he sent ahead of him."

But even with basically the same words, two different gratitudes came to me in my prayer. Perhaps it had to do with the word "messenger." When I read that word I thought of all the beautiful messengers in my life who proclaim Christ's presence to me, as it happened when Jesus himself was journeying toward Jerusalem. There are mentors, children, family, community, friends, and people whose names I don't even know acting as harbingers of the Divine in my life. I am grateful to witness the face of Christ in my life daily.

This week, on the other hand, I spent time with another idea: we don't really know what we are jumping into when we choose to follow the path of Christ. The choice prece…

Sustainable Energy

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This morning as I sat outside with my coffee taking in myriad shades of green, I thought about the different types of energy that we use in different seasons. A favorite song of mine also came to mind (Sun Giant, by Fleet Foxes):

What a life I lead in the summer
What a life I lead in the spring
What a life I lead when the wind, it breathes
What a life I lead in the spring

What a life I lead when the sun breaks free
As a giant torn from the clouds
What a life indeed when that ancient seed
Is a-buried, watered and plowed


What a life we lead, indeed! I know my energy during these months is significantly greater than my energy in those that are colder. All these thoughts ended up coinciding perfectly with a wonderful homily we heard during Liturgy later this morning.

Our presider reminded us that, often times, the last thing on our minds is discipleship during these summer months. Yet, all three readings this morning focused on that theme. First, God calls Elijah to call forward Elisha as a disci…

The Nature of It All

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Jesus deigned to teach me this mystery. He set before me the book of nature; I understood how all the flowers he has created are beautiful, how the splendor of the rose and the whiteness of the lily do not take away the perfume of the little violet or the delightful simplicity of the daisy. I understood that if all flowers wanted to be roses, nature would lose her springtime beauty, and the fields would no longer be decked out with little wildflowers.

And so it is in the world of souls, Jesus' garden. He willed to create great souls comparable to lilies and roses, but he has created smaller ones and these must be content to be daisies and violets destined to give joy to God's glances when He looks down at His feet. Perfection consists in doing His will, in being what He wills us to be...

Just as the sun shines simultaneously on the tall cedars and on each little flower as though it were alone on the earth, so Our Lord is occupied particularly with each soul as though there were …

On Writing [Or, (N)on Writing]

This past week, the community and some of our friends delighted in a wonderful retreat. Fr. Mauritius Wilde, a missionary Benedictine from Germany, presented on Benedict's life through the perspective of detachment.

During the first conference on Monday evening, Fr. Wilde encouraged us all to do something different for the week. If we are early risers, sleep in. If we are voracious readers, drop the books. If we hold a grudge against another community member, let it go. Don't worry though - he assured us we could resume our personal normalcies when retreat ended today!

So, by the above title and lack of posting this past week, you can guess what I did differently - no writing, none. I didn't journal; I didn't take notes during the presentations; I don't think I sent more than five emails; I didn't write here; I didn't even copy and paste good quotes that I read online.

This is my first attempt at writing anything since last Sunday.

And, oh what I learned!

R…

Sacred All Life

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This morning we incorporated the first anniversary of our Pope's encyclical about care for the environment, Laudato Si, into Liturgy.

As I took a walk afterwards, I held our sacred home in prayer as I repeated the words from a song we sang.

Sacred the land --
Sacred the water --
Sacred the sky, holy and true --
Sacred all life --
Sacred each other --
All reflect God who is good.

Let us hold all of life sacred.
Let us walk in the holy presence.

Jesus, Help My Unbelief

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I am currently reading Cynthia Bourgeault. She writes:

Throughout these various resurrection appearances there is an interesting phenomenon at work which I believe conforms to a valid spiritual principal. It might seem logical that the more spiritually advanced a person is, the more they would be able to meet Jesus in a fully enfleshed resurrection appearance -- "like matching like," so to speak. But in fact things seems to work the opposite way. Jesus is present in physical density only insofar as is necessary to match the density of doubt that is blocking the view. Mary Magdalene needs only to see him in order to be reassured, and so Jesus appears to her as a vision. Thomas's doubt is deeply visceral, so he receives a fully visceral resurrection appearance. And some who are particularly advanced on the path, such as John, the beloved disciple, never seem to require a private visitation at all; they already grasp the whole picture in their inner insight. Jesus is corpore…

An Interconnected Sequence of Events

A few nights ago, at dinner, we talked about when we would start seeing fawns appear in our backyard.

Yesterday morning, I sat in on a retreat about Creation Spirituality. I listened to incredible stories of the ways our Spirits interconnect with the Spirit of Earth's creation, of the ways we ache when creation aches.

Yesterday afternoon, I thought about my to-do list for today.

     so much depends upon
a red wheel barrow
glazed with rain water
beside the white chickens.
Yesterday evening, I knew exactly what I wanted to write here in the blog.

This morning, while praying I asked God to grace me today with a lesson in letting go.

So much depends upon a blue car splattered with mud speeding down the road.
After Liturgy, I was going for a walk when I saw a doe crossing the road. A fawn followed behind and across the road with the mother, the first fawn that I spotted this season.

     so much depends
     upon

     a car that comes
     down the road

     and the baby deer
     that, too, comes

     b…

The Gift of Peace

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Today's reflection day was a gift - running, riding, reading, resting, reflecting, and now writing. (I can practice being okay with breaking patterns, too!)

Anyway, I did some inner reflecting in solitude, but I also received the gift of reflection with some wise and wonderful women in different conversations throughout the day.

In one of those conversations, we talked about how the Mystery of God is too big to grasp; we also reflected on how we do not know what will come from one day to the next. But, even through all of that reality, we can practice being at peace with whatever comes our way. We shared with each other what makes us feel most peaceful.

For me, it was hard to not feel peaceful sitting amidst God's creation this evening. (Photo credit: Hers, not mine!)



When do you, or what makes you, feel most peaceful in your life?

Let us walk in the holy presence.