“Like billowing clouds, Like the incessant gurgle of the brook, The longing of the spirit can never be stilled.” ― Hildegard von Bingen
“I am the fiery life of the essence of God; I am the flame above the beauty in the fields; I shine in the waters; I burn in the sun, the moon, and the stars. And with the airy wind, I quicken all things vitally by an unseen, all-sustaining life.”― Hildegard of Bingen
In quiet and slowing, enter the pause.
Witnessing and observing.
Longing of the spirit.
Music of heaven.
In all things.
May you feel the weight, gravity and lightness of it all.
If only but for a few minutes today.
Everchanging and made new, again and again.
“There is the music of Heaven in all things.”― Hildegard of Bingen
“Wisps of clouds scattered across the heavens, as if brought to their place by a great sigh.”― Gina Marinello-Sweeney, Peter
“God’s time is slow, patient, and kind and welcomes friendship; it is a way of being in the fullness of time that is not determined by productivity, success, or linear movements toward personal goals. It is a way of love, a way of the heart.”― John Swinton, Becoming Friends of Time
Fullness of time.
Slow. Steady. Through.
Become a friend of God’s time, of the Author.
Big as the sky.
Written in blue and puffs of white.
Grand as the interior of your soul.
Broad. Wide. Deep.
A great sigh.
A way of being.
“There is one spectacle grander than the sea, that is the sky; there is one spectacle grander than the sky, that is the interior of the soul.”― Victor Hugo, Les Misérables
“Any patch of sunlight in a wood will show you something about the sun which you could never get from reading books on astronomy. These pure and spontaneous pleasures are ‘patches of Godlight’ in the woods of our experience.”― C.S. Lewis
“The third answer is the most difficult one to grasp, but it’s also the one that can save you. The love you lost, or the love you wished for and never had: That love exists eternally. It shifts its shape, but it’s always there. The task is to recognize it in its new form.”― Susan Cain, Bittersweet
In the sacred act of pause.
In a walk in the woods.
In the quiet of morning before you enter the world.
In a clearing, a wide-open field.
Space, margins, room.
Tend to and be tended to.
Love resides, resounds, reverberates.
Sit here a while.
A peace that passes understanding.
This place, this hour.
“Happiness, not in another place but this place…not for another hour, but this hour.”― Walt Whitman
“God’s creation is a life-giving inhale for all of us, and Sabbath is the exhale.”― Shelly Miller, Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World
“A life built upon Sabbath is contented because in rhythms of rest we discover our time is full of the holiness of God.”― Shelly Miller, Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World
Put down busy for one day.
Whether the traditional Sabbath of Saturday or Sunday, pause, rest, take an extended break.
Weave breaks through each day too, however brief, to carry forward.
In the slowing, we see what is actually before us, the full picture not mere struggle and ordinary.
The beauty, blessings, joy, awe, wonder, peace, delight, play.
In the slowing, we hear what’s in us.
A soft whisper guiding, holding, reassuring.
In the slowing, we enter ebb and flow, rhythm and current.
Holy. Sacred. Wide-open spaces.
“Rest provides fine-tuning for hearing God’s messages amidst the static of life.”― Shelly Miller, Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World
“Why, when God’s world is so big, did you fall asleep in a prison of all places?”— Rumi
“There are too many people in the world today who decide to live disappointed rather than risk feeling disappointment. This can take the shape of numbing, foreboding joy, being cynical or critical, or just never really fully engaging.”― Brené Brown, Atlas of the Heart: Mapping Meaningful Connection and the Language of Human Experience
Allow feelings to come, go and pass as they will.
Feel, do not deny.
A full spectrum of emotions without numbing.
Witness them flowing through and by.
The control is not in stopping feelings or circumstances, but not becoming them.
Pause, create space and distance to respond rather than react.
Off autopilot, awake and aware.
In the world, not of the world.
Step back, breathe, transcend, if but only for a few minutes of clarity, of reset.
Accept grace, love, light and a peace that passes all understanding.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” – Philippians 4:6-8
“There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” – Leonard Cohen
“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”― John Lubbock, The Use Of Life
A time out.
Lighten up, opt for rest over rules.
Put down habits and tasks to get a new view.
Ease, nothing to carry.
Look up and around.
Breathe. Sit. Witness.
The light coming in.
“Every person needs to take one day away. A day in which one consciously separates the past from the future. Jobs, family, employers, and friends can exist one day without any one of us, and if our egos permit us to confess, they could exist eternally in our absence. Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for. Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us.”― Maya Angelou, Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now
“You are one body and one spirit, just as God also called you in one hope. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of all, who is over all, through all, and in all.”-Ephesians 4:4-6
Each day a new reflection to consider, focus and ponder. Sundays are “Mini-Easters” where “we take a break from any sad, heavy feelings for a respite to do something that makes you feel buoyed by gladness.” So here goes…
Today is my great nephew’s Elijah’s baptism.
A celebration and welcoming.
An invitation to all to be baptized again.
Dipped in the waters.
Renewed and made new daily.
This is his day and ours by witnessing and accepting the invitation to a peace that passes understanding, a joy everlasting and hope that ties it all together.
So Happy Mini-Easter and Happy Baptism to Elijah and to all who are called to be instruments of peace.
Easter two weeks away.
14 days left of our 40 day journey.
Birth, life, resurrection.
“Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.” Amen.
— St. Francis of Assisi
“Joy is a mystery because it can happen anywhere, anytime, even under the most unpromising circumstances, even in the midst of suffering, with tears in its eyes.”—Frederick Buechner, The Hungering Dark
“Somewhere we know that without silence words lose their meaning, that without listening speaking no longer heals, that without distance closeness cannot cure.”― Henri J.M. Nouwen
Life is richer, more complicated, and complex than a bumper sticker, a platitude, a paragraph, a snapshot.
Allow, invite and embrace the mystery, unknowing, intricacies, story, nuance, shadows, shapes and always light, always hope, always resurrection.
A beautiful mess, joy woven through all of it.
Easter and spring at the end of the story, with glimpses on each page.
“Oh, there are so many lives. How we wish we could live them concurrently instead of one by one by one. We could select the best pieces of each, stringing them together like a strand of pearls. But that’s not how it works. A human life is a beautiful mess.”― Gabrielle Zevin, Elsewhere
“We must dare to pray even as we doubt… True faith is like a light that begins to flicker, however faintly, in the darkness that beckons us to pray even when we can hardly find the faith to pray.”― Jerry Sittser
I am so afraid to open my clenched fists!
Who will I be when I have nothing left to hold on to?
Who will I be when I stand before you with empty hands?
Please help me to gradually open my hands
and to discover that I am not what I own,
but what you want to give me.”― Henri J.M. Nouwen, The Only Necessary Thing: Living a Prayerful Life
In grief and loss, light remains.
May we all be angels for each other.
Cup full, both sorrow and joy.
Angels for each other.
Grace. Peace. Light.
“We need to be angels for each other, to give each other strength and consolation. Because only when we fully realize that the cup of life is not only a cup of sorrow but also a cup of joy will we be able to drink it.”― Henri J.M. Nouwen