A Reminder from the Pope

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Good  Morning, God!

I am not doing enough . . . or much . . . for refugees! This massively avoidable fact was brought home by the morning paper doing a piece on Pope Francis’s apostolic exhortation titled “Rejoice and Be Glad”. He talks about protecting the unborn. Then says “Equally sacred, however, are the lives of the poor, those already born, the destitute, the abandoned.” And he continues saying,  that Welcoming the stranger at the door is fundamental to the faith.

I know, God! You didn’t just read this — you inspired it! But here are a few of my favorite phrases from the first two chapters:
• “When somebody has an answer for every question, it is a sign that they are not on the right road.” Then he reminds us that God infinitely transcends us; he is full of surprises.
• We are called to make every effort to preserve charity: “The one who loves another has fulfilled the law… for love is the fulfilment of the law” (Rom 13:8.10). “For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself’” (Gal 5:14).

Best of all, Pope Francis lifts up the ordinary acts of life that when done with love make us more aware that we live in God. And that God wants to be even more in us.

We live Ordinary Lives in which nothing is too small for You, God, to bless and to participate in.  I am so thankful.

 

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Posted in Caring, choices, Choosing Meaning, Choosing to respond, connecting, delight, LOVE, rejoicing, The daily details of love

The Blessing of Being With

Fr. Boyle

Good Day, God!

A friend mentioned to me that she had heard Fr. Boyle interviewed and she came away with the idea that he wasn’t keen on prayer.  I pondered that. And it came to me that Father Boyle is in the business (Your Business, God) of Being With. He hangs out with the same folks that Jesus hung out with. Folks that the Righteous have judged and turned away from. He loves them. He listens to them. And I bet that sometime he might even say a few choice words.

The older I get the more I appreciate the blessings of being with. There is a lot of communication going on below our mental radar when we are truly there WITH another person.

So, I’m eager to go hear Fr. Boyle this coming April 22 . . . I wonder if my wonderful husband Kit will go with me . . . or go to the opera we have tickets for. Hmm. In the meantime I have been moved by hearing him read his latest book.  Thanks, God!

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Posted in Being With, Belonging to each other, connecting, Families, family, LOVE, the gift of persistent love

Joys and Delights

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Good Evening, God!

I’d gone to bed early and perhaps I dozed but I wanted to sit here before You. Yes, I know You are in All Times and Places. Still, it is comforting to sit consciously before You. A dear friend sent me this sunrise photo taken on Easter morning.

It was just last night when another dear friend talked about not wanting the pagan trappings of Easter. I confess, God, that I pulled out my phone and displayed the Easter Rabbit that Your Heavens had briefly bestowed upon us.

You must laugh at how serious and solemn we are about You, God. I think it was during the Palm Sunday festivities at St. James in the City when the thought popped into my mind that You might want us to play with You as much as worship You.

Saint Paul exhorts us to REJOICE! And again I say REJOICE! How can we not rejoice in the presence of Your World? As Your Spirit flows through us — forgiving and healing — joy seems to be the overwhelming response. Joy, Love, Peace, Kindness, Gentleness, Faithfulness and Self Control . . . the fruit of the Spirit, indeed.

Posted in connecting, Fruit of the Spirit, JOY, LOVE, Play, Sabbath as PLAY

pausing to pray

IMG_2869Good Day, God!

This morning I read — from a handout our pastor gave us — this poem by Mary Oliver.
It makes PRAYER so simple. And I feel that is exactly how You want it to be. SIMPLE! So we don’t need to be special or ordained or qualified. We just need to pause and pray.

PRAYING BY Mary Oliver

It doesn’t have to be
the blue iris, it could be
weeds in a vacant lot, or a few
small stores: just pay attention, then patch

a few words together and don’t try
to make them elaborate, this isn’t
a contest but the doorway

into thanks, and a silence in which
another voice may speak.

 

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Posted in Awe, connecting, gratitude, Prayer, praying, taking time to focus

Embracing Enchantment

blue flowers

Good Morning, God!

The other day, as I was doing Centering Prayer, I invited whoever wished to come up out of my Inner Dungeon to appear. Immediately there stood before me — in my Mind’s Eye — a woman who introduced herself as The Magician.

Magician? I was totally surprised! I had been firmly taught to avoid magic and witches etc. But, there she was. I was assured it wasn’t about Black Magic or White Magic — but rather High Magic. Magic as in the books of C.S. Lewis.

That was reassuring! Still, a Magician? In me? Part of me? Hmm.

So, I’ve been pondering. So far I have two insights. In today’s world magicians influence WHAT the audience focuses on. By being enticed to SEE one thing we MISS another. I thought, OH! Perhaps my magician is to help me SEE what You might want me to see. . . to help me focus . . . to help me stop missing things. I LIKE THAT!

The second insight is more societal. For several centuries we’ve been in the Age of Enlightenment where REASON RULES and values Control and Predictability. Very little room was made for You and the inexplicable . . the miraculous. But, now Science is moving into Quantum Physics. And that increased understanding is inviting us back into Mystery . . . and Wonder . . .and Awe.

We are not designed to live by Reason alone. We need ENCHANTMENT. We need to dwell in the ever so REAL Cosmos where surprises are everywhere. Where synchronicity happens. And a pause to admire flowers can connect us to You.

 

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Posted in Awe, beauty, connecting, delight, Enchantment, Faith, Greening Spirit, mysteries

The Delight of Surprises

IMG_2417Good Evening, God!

What a marvelous world we live in. My wonderful husband Kit and I went with dear friends to watch the Super Moon rise. Only we went on the 30th . . . one day before full. Full moons are lovely. But, the moon one day before full was still 99% full and it rose 64 minutes earlier!  That matters to those of us who rise early and go to bed early.

One good thing about full moons is that they are predictable. I could actually look up the times and percentages. But I couldn’t help but think that our world is suffused with beautiful moments — like this photo I took while waiting for the Moon Rise Main Event.

It was an unexpected delight! I just hadn’t seen the clouds. Not until I took a photo.sunsetJust clouds. But they filled me with Joy. And Your World, God, is FILLED with small fleeting delights. I think there is a Japanese saying that Things that are Fleeting are More Beautiful?

My question is — How can I cultivate the quality of  Being Aware?

 

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Posted in awareness, beauty, clapping our hands in joy, connecting, JOY, the joy of sharing, web of life

Stuck in What We Know

71E9PjUQCzL._SL1500_Good Evening, God!

It was LOVE/LUST at first sight with the iPhone. I wanted it. In fact, I wanted my Life to be just like the face of the iPhone — full of things clearly named and easily accessible. At the time I was using a Pearl Blackberry. But, I left that behind with never a backward glance.

The other day, while shopping in Costco, I fell into conversation with the spouse of a visiting classmate of Kit’s. A nice guy – clearly intelligent! We exchanged phone numbers and  he commented on the nice interface of my iPhone. You don’t have an iPhone? I asked.  No no, I have a clamshell he responded.

At dinner that night I mentioned to Kit my surprise that such a smart guy didn’t have an iPhone. We discussed possible reasons. No pushy children? No helpful grandchildren? I confess, God, that I was considering  sending him a text on how to get to the nearest Apple store when Reality Broke Through!

This guy was Just Like Me!  What he had WORKED. And there were lots and lots of things waiting for him to learn and discover. My beloved iPhone just wasn’t on his list. Hmm.

Once this Broader View took hold — I thought of things I wanted to learn to do, but hadn’t. Ah yes, learning takes focus . . . and focus takes energy . . . and then there is the little matter of commitment.  All of those things are helped by Desire. Wanting something is the first step toward getting it.

Well, yes, God. Maybe THAT is the real problem. I am quite happy with my life as it is.  I’d have to say that I’m good with Gratitude. . . and now I’m realizing that being grateful definitely reduces my desire to learn, grow and change.

Hmm.

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Posted in connecting, Energy, gratitude, growing toward up, learning, taking time to focus

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