2013:Prayers Answered

This year, 2013, I dared to pray a few prayers for me, and they were answered. 

I pray for others routinely, easily, but partly due to my religious baggage (and partly because I don’t trust my wants) I am hesitant to ask for what I think I might want in material things.  I’m also careful to not pray for patience because I’ve learned that in asking for this, God sometimes sends opportunities (with people, or situations) demanding just that!  An opportunity to practice patience!  And that’s never ever any fun. Continue reading

Finding the Advent(ure) in Advent

This year, like no other, Advent is the beginning of an adventure

After years and years of trying to escape the guilt of not being with my family in the Midwest; after all those heart-breaking moments in hospitals and nursing homes and being driven nearly mad by thinking about their loneliness and taunting hauntings of the season’s light just outside of increasingly smaller and smaller rooms; in facing the innocent joys of Christmas damned and snuffed out in my immediate family by not giving them children with hope and promise of a spring-like, regenerative life; and in remembering all those years when to sit in church was to fight tears of longing to share the pew with those I loved while hating the person I was sitting with (me); I am near-to accepting permission to love Christmas.

My long-time sorrows and sins have broken like the rivers of a great thaw; clear, cold waters begin to rush between the banks of guilt and giving everything I have, if it were only possible, to bring back a childhood scent or sound of my Mother making supper at the stove, or one more game of cards with my Grandparents, or with my Sister at her kitchen table while the deepening gray skies of Illinois winters prepare to birth a quiet snow for tomorrow morning’s brilliantly lit wonderland.

This Advent I feel a new adventure stirring my soul. Continue reading

Push-me Pull-me

I’m learning to listen more closely to the push-me pull-me dance that goes on in my strong, sometimes relentless will to get things done; making a struggled journey of even the more noble motives to understand or be understood, to serve; where good works miss their mark of God’s intended arch.

I know the difference between the push-me to get it done vs allowing God to pull-me through with ease and delight.  I know how it feels in my body, mind and spirit when I push and push to meet the deadline (even self imposed); to sacrifice listening and heeding God’s timing and expressions for the sake of getting it over with – accomplishment – crossed off the list – finished. Continue reading

Messy Meditations Sometimes

Sometimes, like today, my morning-time-meditations are just messy.  I may not see their value while sitting, but from experience I know their absence is inevitably reflected by some measure of madness sometime later in my day.

And sometimes, like today, I set the timer for another round because experience, and fellows, has taught me that doing less, away with God, is more.

So I return for round two and climb into.  Sometimes.

Don’t Talk In The Meadow

Don’t talk in the Meadow.

Don’t worry or ask about that right now.
Walk to the center of your meadow and be still with me.

Don’t drag your world into mine.
More is accomplished in your world for having been here with me, unfettered with thoughts.

Even leave, for now, your prayers and petitions at the gate.
Then pray ceaselessly when you return to your world.

Listen.
Listen to the wind that you can not see, or touch,
but know by the dancing grasses it’s running in the meadow.

Don’t talk in the Meadow.
Listen and rest with me.

Two notes about this particular meditation:
One – I’ve gone to the meadow of my mind for awhile now.  It first showed up with the suggestion to picture a place that has meaning/relevance to me – a mountaintop, the woods, a stream, an ocean?  It can be whatever place feels safe, welcoming and exceptional to you.  But, for me it’s the meadow.  Over the years I’ve created the particulars including directional location, and added upgrades such as a wooden 10×10 deck just above the swaying grasses (to avoid creatures I’d rather not worry about when visiting the meadow). And this year, a pool umbrella.  I may be a little nuts – but it does make me happy.

Two – I’m pretty sure this meditation is specific to this time of the year, and for me; and that not all meditations are meant to be without prayers as during this season of Advent.