It was the hobo story.
Reaching deep into my own grandmother’s history of being a safe place for hobos that traveled by their house. Cold water slapping me awake to how far we have come from being open to strangers and sharing our food. Ice cubes is more like it…
Then tears. They sneak back up now as I read Wells and feel seen by her. By you. Tenderness somehow all about me. And not.
Somehow this counts for something; for the people we tell to keep on moving. I’m not sure how but it does. I have to believe that it does somehow or we all are lost.
And we are not.
The point is simply this: how tender can we bear to be? What good manners can we show as we welcome ourselves and others into our hearts?-Rebecca Wells
Sometimes the simplest of tools are the best when entering discernment, or facing challenging situations of opinions.
And, these three questions seem to be pretty simple, straight-forward tests that move me to be more in line with what I believe God might ask of me.
Is it true? Is it necessary? Is it kind?
There is debate, imagine that!, in the origin of these. But whether they come to us from certain poets, Christians, Buddhists, other religions or philosophers, they seem to call us to a reckoning towards our higher selves, and to a spirit of kindness. So much so that I wonder that in simply asking,
“Is it kind?”
I might better know the answers to all of the other questions. And the answers that best suit my soul.
Many of us are searching; wrangling our faith and reason against the pain and suffering cast by nature’s net over our, or loved one’s lives. Entire lives have been changed, and taken. Homes and precious memories have been made into seemingly meaningless, soggy piles of rubble on the side of the road.
Then I come across this. Yet another reference to Job, the possible poster-child of suffering, and one most perfect paragraph that reflects and reminds me, in words and ways that I could no better express, both the arrogance and grounding comfort of my belief.
In case this writing may also meet and lift you where you are today, I share it here, with love.
“Ordinary Mysticism”, Dennis Tamburello, O.F.M
Maddie has been pretty upset. Not eating. I think she knows many are in peril’s way. Today as the rain let up and it’s looking like we are spared, she ate. I found her here in front of a box I had moved to higher ground.
It seems a striking reminder that we and our pets and our earth are fragile. And in need of gentle care. But, as I see the courageous hearts and hands of Houston come out in droves I am reminded that we are strong too. Made strong by our inherent sense of community and love, and a God of our understanding.
I pray in this time of rescue and recovery that we listen and allow the gentle and the strong in us to guide our pace and service. With love.
Posted August 29, 2017; the first break in Hurricane Harvey’s rains.
A young girl, looking on from the safety of her father’s shoulders, to what freedom looks like.
About this women’s march… I went. And I’m glad I did. And apparently, a whole bunch of others did too. But here’s the thing: I really struggled with my decision to go.
I had to get to my own reasons and motives. I needed to pray for God’s idea for me and talk with friends. And when I did, I started owning that I was afraid, and worried that my walking might endorse un-peaceful protest which I am very much against. I worried that my showing up would look like full endorsement of some beliefs that I do not hold, and, here’s the really embarrassing part, I worried about what people might think of me.
At 62, still worrying about other’s disapproval. Continue reading
Praying for peace one step at a time.
Dedicating prayers as we walk a mile, or just a few steps, can make us powerful warriors against the enemies of our minds and in our world. Choose a route, or a step, and pray for a loved one or an enemy – perceived or real.
Experiment with dedicating a walk to a friend in loss or need or illness – see if you can hold for her hope and loving thoughts the entire way.
Be willing to pray for your “enemies” of doubt and fear, or boss or politician. Dig deep into your treasure chest of pride and prejudice and choose to pray for their enlightenment, and for your own. Pray for them and their families; pray that all hearts be softened and for your own transformation from fear to love.
Be a moveable priest in prayer and prove that we are not impotent against wars when we enlist and follow Christ’s commands of love.
“We cannot run to all parts of the world to bind up the wounds of the sick of body or assist the mentally disturbed, but the contemplative soul in deep prayer before the throne of the Father is exercising the healing power of Jesus Christ.” (The Jesus Prayer, George A Maloney, S.J., Dove Publications)
This includes a long quote, but it feels very appropriate for these times of feeling powerless over bad and senseless things happening. It brings me back again and again to remember that praying is powerful and not the least of what we can do. It is the most and first of all great acts and attitudes of love.
These words of hope reflect what I like to call the Moveable priest (intentional small p). Continue reading