Tuesday, October 31, 2006

truth moment

frequently truth is silent
frequently those who speak out the truth are silenced
sadly the truth in each one of us can be silenced
by ourselves
all too frequently

Monday, October 30, 2006

fingernail moment

my heart was heavy this morning
sorrowed with the knowledge and sight of the broken body
to ease the crying of my soul
I decided to make bread
while kneading and rolling to shape the dough
I was suddenly flooded with the image of God
kneeling in the clay of His creation
as His fingers gently probed
and formed
then placing His mouth on the mouth of this man
He kissed him alive
filling him with His very own breath

as I saw and felt the dough of the bread under my fingernails
I realized afresh that the clay of me
is under the very fingernails of God

Sunday, October 29, 2006

heart moment

last evening
approximately 3500 living stones
came together
with one heart
this morning
approximately 100 living stones
came apart
because there were two hearts

Friday, October 27, 2006

delightful moment

friends are wonder-filled gifts
each one special
each one to be treasured
each to be valued and honored and respected and heard

there are some friends who are a pure delight to be with
no matter how many moments have passed
there is always such pure joy
in the coming together
sitting across the table
seeing the eyes
listening to the words
of the present moment

the hearing of another's heart
is such a tender privilege

there is a fragility in the moment that is a little scary

I have been deeply blessed this day
to have been with such a friend
the wonder of being entrusted
with such a one
is a bit overwhelming
there is no fear in being touched
it is the touching
that brings me to my knees

abyss moment

What can we gain by sailing to the moon
if we are not able to cross the abyss
that separate us from ourselves?
This is the most important of all voyages of discovery,
and without it,
all the rest are not only useless,
but disastrous.
Thomas Merton

Thursday, October 26, 2006

ring moments

I have been doing some traveling lately

while digging through the 28 years of accumulated stuff in the crawl space of our home I came across boxes of papers, pictures and letters which I had forgotten were hiding there

there was my dad's intelligence log from the war
pages and pages and pages of his 5 year journey through hell
words and sentences had been carefully cut out, very precisely
I suppose by a censor
so I had to guess some locations and events

there were his maps with blue stars scattered throughout
and scattered among the blue stars
were drops of red blood

there was a box of letters my dad had written to his parents
every word written on blue thin paper
inscribed in red on the top
"from the field"

each one had been carefully kept
and so I was able to read
his very personal five year story

and I cannot even imagine the words not able to be written

there are stamps from countries that no longer exist

and then there are the pictures
most of people I never knew
some have names
many have not

and there are the landing papers
of my grandfather's father
(or perhaps it is his grandfather
I have not yet figured it out)
chronicaling his first steps on American soil in 1815

there are wedding certificates
birth certificates
and death certificates

all telling a story
and these are all pieces of my story

I heard an illustration a few days ago
about the rings of a tree trunk
how each year is marked by a ring
and each new ring surrounds all the previous rings
a ring is never lost

how our lives
are are made up of all our rings
the good ones
and the not so good ones

the story of my life has been enlarged now
with all these new rings inside

it is important to explore our rings
to fully understand who we are

it is an interesting journey
I recommend it

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

wondering moment

have you ever wondered about:
the sound caught in the throat of a wooden bell

the unheard song shaped by fire

the truth in the flame of a trimmed wick

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

struggle moment

my greatest struggle
is the struggle
not to struggle
what the soul has to do
in the time of quiet
is only to be gentle
and make no noise

abba moment

it was in the garden
at the moment of His greatest maturity
that Jesus cried out
abba, abba

Monday, October 23, 2006

Monday moment

as I sit here at my computer
God is present
breathing life into me
and into everything around me
for a few moments
I sit silently
aware of His loving presence
and take the path inward
to stand before Him

Friday, October 20, 2006

Jesus moment

a friend introduced me to the following quote:
remember not only the men of good will,
but also those of ill will.
But do not remember all the suffering they have inflicted upon us.
Remember rather the fruits we have brought,
thanks to this suffering:
our comradeship,
our loyalty,
our humility,
the courage,
the generosity,
the greatness of heart that has grown out of this.
And when they come to judgment,
let all the fruits we have bourne be their forgiveness."
Found on a scrap of wrapping paper
at the liberation of Ravensbruck Concentration Camp

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

truth moment

I am a child of God
a brother of Jesus
I am held safe in the intimacy of the divine love

it is necessary to live my life from that inner place of love
my greatest spiritual task
is to be so fully trusting that I belong to God
that I can be free in the world
free to speak when my words are not received
free to act when my actions are criticized,
or considered useless
free to receive love from people
to belong to God while giving of myself to people

today I pray Christ will pierce my heart
with the things that pierce His heart
to grant me the grace to look for Him
in the midst of the world's suffering
and that He will give me the faith to join Him there

the place of crucifixion was near a garden

Monday, October 16, 2006

l'Arche moments

I was invited tonight into a l’Arche community for an evening. Off and on all day I wondered about the invitation and what I had to offer to those who live in this community.
And now after spending three or so hours in their midst the truth is I indeed had very little to offer them but they sure modeled something hugely powerful to me.
The residents are adults who are severely physically, emotionally and mentally handicapped, some cannot speak and some never stop speaking, many have been either ignored or rejected by almost everyone who crossed their earlier paths – and yet they welcomed me with hearts and arms wide open. They offered their love without hesitation and with full expectation their love would be received and love would be returned. They touched, hugged and kissed with pure innocent hearts with no concern or even thought about being misunderstood. There was such transparency, such spontaneity, such realness and it brought our differences into stark focus.
I saw in a brighter light the size of my hesitation to take the risk of offering love or accepting love, the moments of touching I have missed for fear of being misunderstood, the times of not opening or offering my heart to another out of fear of it being rejected or crushed
this l’Arche residence overflowed with joy – there was much spontaneous song with no one ever worrying about being on key, or even singing the same song!
there was evident acceptance of one another, an acceptance not in spite of their differences but an acceptance with their differences
I have much to learn from this community and they have so much to offer. I was very moved and quickly accepted when they asked if I would come back next week

Thank you Jimmy, Bobby, Francine, Laura, Dorothy, big George and Sammy. The fragrant beauty of who you are will forever remain with me.

insightful moment

"If you want to build a ship,
don’t drum up the men to gather the wood,
divide the work,
and give orders.
teach them to yearn
for the vast and endless sea”
Antoine de Saint Exupery

leaping moment

if the babe in your womb
does not leap
when you are with
the people who surround you
you are surrounded by the wrong people

Sunday, October 15, 2006

sniff moment

there was a season
when David
walked amongst his people
unrecognized as their king
simply because he smelled of sheep
give a good sniff to those who surround you this day

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Friday, October 13, 2006

seasonal moment

there are seasons
when the song of life
seems to be written
without breathing spaces

Thursday, October 12, 2006

only a moment

this body
an earthen bowl
scooped from clay
to hold light

this body
a simple cup
formed and filled
to pour

this body
breath’s vibrations
over a reed
to speak

this body
but only for a moment

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

watching moment

there was a caressing of my heart
a soft touching of my cheek
he was gentle in his asking
will you watch with me
and we sat together at the edge of the night
watching through the dawn’s laboring
in its birthing of day
and he showed me the things of his heart
all the pastures
some green and some not
some healthy
and some filled with hidden thorns
some with hard ugly walls of pride
some with high fences of legalism
some with gates of ownership
some with monuments of self
and the shepherds
some asleep
some wounded and bleeding
some blinded
some crippled
some chained
some with their legs caught in toothy traps
and the sheep
looking lost
some covered in the scars of being too closely shorn
some fighting
many just lying around their eyes glazed with apathy
and the lambs
dangerously close to cliff edges
entangled in thorn bushes
and to each one
he bent low and spoke
sometimes a word of warning
sometimes a word of correction
sometimes a word of guidance, of direction
sometimes a word of praise
but each word spoken in deep deep love
and as he spoke
some shepherds and some sheep lifted their heads to hear
and some did not, there was no recognition of his voice
some nights we dance
some nights we sing
but this was a night of sorrow
of sadness
in the visiting of what is of what was to have been
and yet
it was all seen through eyes of such love
and there were the shepherds surrounded by the biting teeth of the sheep
and the shepherds in the midst of the sheep but not seen by the sheep
and sheep seen but not wanted nor accepted by their shepherds
although I could feel his burning anger at the things hidden in the shadows
his deep sadness at the heartrending bleating of the sheep
his eyes were soft in their knowing

Monday, October 09, 2006

defining moment

several times over the past few months
I have been asked to provide words to describe
"who I am"
for either a bio
an introduction
or a short blurb for a pamphlet
and it is always a struggle
to find the words
not words someone else wants to hear
but honest transparent words
that allows one to remain little

there was a stunning moment this weekend
when my son
took me into the midst of his circle of friends
and simply said
hey everyone - this is my mom

while hearing those amazing six words
which perfectly defined and described
I thought about the astonishing privilege it has been
to watch this boy child I had birthed
become such a beautiful gentle giant of a man

and this mom
is deeply thankful
for her son

and this is who I am

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

in moment

I have heard the music behind the words
I have listened to the song
which stirs and warms my heart
and gives hope and meaning to my life
with all that is beautiful
and all that is broken in me
I want to sing this song
even if my voice is weak
and sometimes wavers
so that others may sing it
and together we may sing a song of hope
to bring joy
where there is sadness and despair

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

off/on moment

confession time!
I am severely challenged when it comes to anything remotely techy - even the word remote gives me the shudders ........
one morning last week I unplugged my cell and was surprised not to hear its perky chirp - taking a quick glance I noted the absence of any light or any time display - even when I flipped open the cover there were no signs of life - several pokes at random keys failed to wake the thing up - even a not so gentle shake did not have any effect ........
I was about to hit the highway for an out of town gathering and being a bit cautious now with only one working eye I wished the security of a phone, "just in case" ... so before hitting the road I detoured into the store where I had purchased the phone last April to ask for help. There was a very nice young tattooed and eyebrow pierced boy/man behind the counter - I explained my predicament and handed him the phone. OF COURSE, he simply pushed a key and I immediately heard the familiar perky chirp. When I asked how he did that, he restrained himself hugely, after all he was dealing with a little old lady, and told me he simply turned the phone on.
I didn't even know it had an off button (I know - April !- extend me grace here) - who turned it off????????
this boy, who is another mother's son, explained that it turns itself off when the battery is low, to prevent total depletion - and I recalled the very very long call I had had the day before ...........
I am sure I made this boy's day and that he probably spent the evening in the bar regaling his friends ....
all this then soon afterwards played out in my life in a different fashion

there were a few extremely busy days, days of pouring out, one right after the other, after which I neared my total depletion point and my lights went out - I was definitely drained and absolutely not perky - I could not find, let alone push, my on button ...........
and some friends came 'round
and we worshiped
and we prayed
and we laughed
and we touched
and their care and their love charged up my battery
and their presence lit up and pressed my on button

sometimes, probably most times, it takes the community around us to help us find the right switch ...........

Sunday, October 01, 2006


it is not the number of breaths that count
it is the moments that take your breath away