Sunday, December 27, 2009

community moment

to live in community
is to learn to walk alone in the desert
at night
and in tears

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

yes moment

those who say yes to God
must learn to live
between the polarities of
strength and vulnerability

ruth haley barton

Monday, December 21, 2009

hourglass moment

for several years now
I have been "seeing" an hourglass in the spirit
all of life contained in this hourglass

it is a lovely hourglass
pure crystal
and pure gold

I can almost hear it singing at times

and these days
I am seeing
its crystal again

this has been a tremendous year
a tremulous year
a tenuous year
a tender year

traveling in the valley for so many months
feeling the touch of the shadow
while feeling the strength in the pierced hand that gripped me tight

being separated from friends
and joined together with new friends

losing a community
in the midst of finding a new community

letting go of so much
while gaining immeasurably more

and as the grains of the sand of 2009
slip through the crystal neck
I am acutely aware of those who have stood with me
sat with me
sang to me
prayed for me
held me
cried with me
laughed with me
and loved me

some near by
some on the other side of the mountains
some across the waters

each one so unique

each one enriching my life
enlarging my spirit

each one adding a harmonizing note
to the song of me

my clay bears many fingerprints
some have pressed deep
some have gently touched
some simply brushed alongside
but I am a far better shaped piece of clay
because of each one

I am filled with thanks
for the gift of friendship

the ribbon of relationships

the privilege of being loved
and of loving

I know some of you read this blog
and I am always so touched that you do
and then take the time to write
to encourage
or simply to laugh with me
and sometimes to cry with me

this blog is bookended by two Davids

David D who got me started in all this
gave me the courage to believe there was value in my words
loved me enough to want to be connected to my daily moments

and David M
whom I met through this blog
and who now is a most precious brother
a poustinia dweller like me

and I think of so many others in between
some I have met
and some not

but I want you to know I appreciate you
and I value your journeys
each one

none of us know how many grains of sand are in our hourglass
but all of us know
the grains slip
one by one
through the crystal neck

at times they seem to slip faster
and at times slower

but they slip through nonetheless

and I am grateful

and thankful

and peaceful

and filled with love

and my heart overflows with joy

I am blessed

Thursday, December 10, 2009

with one another moment

The wolf will live with the lamb,
the panther lie down with the kid,
calf, lion and fat-stock beast together,
with a little boy to lead them.
The cow and the bear will graze,
their young will lie down together.
The lion will eat hay like the ox.
The infant will play over the den of the adder;
the baby will put his hand into the viper's lair.
No hurt, no harm will be done on all my holy mountain
for the country will be full of knowledge of Yahweh
as the waters cover the sea.
(Isaiah 11:6-9)

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

pearl moment

the pearl

begins its existence as an irritant
invading the home of an oyster
moving in where it is not invited
nor wanted
where it does not belong

it sneaks in through a tiny opening
just a crack

the oyster host does not welcome this invasion
the oyster is no longer comfortable in its own home
the oyster is no longer at ease

the oyster reacts
by slowly
steadily wrapping this irritant in a secretion of mother of pearl
until the irritant no longer irritates
but fits comfortably
and begins to dwell seurely with the oyster
protected and hidden in the oyster's own home

the oyster adjusts to welcome the pearl

the irritant is now a pearl
something of great beauty and great value
yet remains hidden in a secure place
until exposed to the world

it's very releasing bringing about the death of the one who caused it to be

and this is God's design

and how do we
do I
react to an irritant invading my ease

do I try to kick it out
shove it aside
most irritants in our lives come in the form of a person

and we,
during the invasion
in our discomfort
our loss of ease
we tend to forget this irritating person
is simply a pearl in disguise

and so we must choose how to react
do we coat this irritant with anger
hard words

or do we wrap what appears to be simply a piece of grit
in a mother of pearl coat of love
and grace
providing shelter and protection
while watching what God will do

and thus have the privilege of partnering
with Almighty God
in the birthing of a pearl
of great price

are we willing
am I willing
to die
to my own comfort
my own ease
so another may live

shoot moment

The small child of Bethlehem,
the unknown young man of Nazareth,
the rejected preacher,
the naked man on the cross,
he asks for my full attention.
The work of our salvation
takes place in the midst of a world
that continues to shout,
and overwhelm us with its claims and promises.
But the promise is hidden in the shoot that sprouts from the stump,
a shoot that hardly anyone notices
Henri Nouwen