Changes await us
each day brings something lovely
Changes await us
each day brings something lovely
Happens every year
Del and Neal find new truths
At Thanksgiving time
Today is a free writing day. Write at least four-hundred words, and once you start typing, don’t stop. No self-editing, no trash-talking, and no second guessing: just go. Bonus points if you tackle an idea you’ve been playing with but think is too silly to post about.
“If the only prayer you said was thank you, it would be enough.- Attributed to Meister Eckhart
Here is a site about him and his work. There are others but this is an interesting place to start. http://www.ellopos.net/default.asp
I’ve been playing with the idea of gratitude, it appears frequently on this blog, coupled with grace. It is vocational and avocation for me and I guess I hope for most of us. In this hard life, no one has to help us and yet everyone’s survival depends on assisting on another. I’ve been noticing that when I am grateful, I’m less self involved and generally happier. While I consider myself a person who is appreciative of what I have, I want to be more so.
I’ve been trying to write a prayer that expresses the sentiment attributed to Meister Eckhart. There are so many wonderful things to be thankful for. Health and family tops the list for me. Here, I want to focus on the seemingly simple elements I notice and forget to be thankful for.
Spirit of the Cosmos
If this one day is all that is left to me, I pray to consider my life, the moments that have brought joy, and the joy of being alive where I have been placed in this space and time. I am blessed with so much to say thank you for.
The view outside my window. Day in, day out. Thank you, loving creator, for the gentle waving of pine branches reminding me that as they are evergreen, so each new day has rhythms that are understood and eternal and timeless yet reborn each day as new. Constantly present, a shelter to the woodland creatures that share our space, a moment’s breath when I working, thank you.
The seasons and rituals afforded in winter, spirng, summer and autumn. For Thanksgiving dinner, in November and crisp apples in September. The greening of the earth in April and the first walk in snowy December, brisk and chill. God of time and space, thank you.
For each person crossing my path, those who inform, instruct and even those who irritate my life. All have much to teach me. Thank you for the moments I am open to learning.
For the moments of grace, forgiveness, for joy borne of pain, gain out of loss, triumph over that which seemed insurmountable, you, spirit of earth, sea and sky have inhabited them all. For the memories of moments. For all who have supported and sustained me, for family and friends new and old, for the story that may yet unfold, thank you.
As the day lengthens and night descends, may these blessings abundantly bestowed on me carry me and those I love into a quiet rest and the thought of a new day. Thank you.
Who am I if not a chaplain? Where will I work? How does it happen that a life changes so quickly? How can I not know the answer to that question after spending countless hours in the ER with families devastated by losses costly than mine? I must learn to be my own chaplain.
I’ve learned and am still learning that when something I value is lost, I often gain in other ways. If I am open to it, there is much to learn in loss. I find a resist it, if the loss is so painful that I cannot bear to face it. I find I miss out on framing the loss and incorporating it into my life. Sometimes I can do this, sometimes I cannot face it and must wait, like a player who has been sidelined, until at least some of the injury heals so that I can face what is lost and welcome the journey of finding what awaits. Being a creature of habit, I’m not so fond of new and changing things. Being a student of life, I realize that things change every day. I hope I’m getting better at incorporating changes, but sometimes, just like my walking habit, it is two steps forward and one step back…
I watch my dogs and find that my understanding of walking needs their understanding, too. It is time for me to walk in a new way. Perhaps I will write or go back to school and enhance my chaplaincy skills with a counseling degree. Maybe a new avenue in which to use my chaplaincy will appear. Perhaps I’ll learn to make time for those things that are mine and not stay too busy with the lives of others, putting them too much in place
of my own. I will never stop walking with a purpose. But my choice now lies in
the knowledge that I must learn to walk with purpose and yet make time to find the purposes hidden from me. There is much to explore under the leaves and in the dirt. My job right now is to learn this new path and to befriend it. I’m grateful to have my animal guides to remind me of the way. As one of my nameless acquaintances drives by, I notice my little dog in his dance of scratching and sniffing. He moves with grace as both acts
merge into his little routine. I pray that one day I may do the same.
Although not my home until 12 years past twelve years old, this home holds much of my heart. When I walked into it, I knew we were supposed to live there. There have been only two times in my life when I’ve felt that strong sense of pull towards a place. Didn’t think much about logistics. Didn’t know if we could even afford it. We were not sure we would even get a chance to see it as the realtor who listed it had a contingency on it for a family member. She did not want it shown. It was an old farm house built in the 19th century. Bull’s eye molding, painted white, around all the entryways to each room. There were two rooms that were my home within this home. A small den off the dining room. Yes, it did have 1970’s inspired olive green shag carpeting. But what I loved most about it was the coziness of this 8 by 10 foot room. The exterior wall had built in bookshelves, wall to wall. I thought it was palatial. I could not believe we were actually able to buy it. It was ours!
The next room I loved was the kitchen. Another built in, this was the original cupboard to the farmhouse kitchen. Beautiful glass doors to the upper part of the cupboard. An Old Flour Bin, that hinged and was lined so that 25 pounds or so of flour could be stored there. A side porch off the kitchen, where a raccoon once attacked the screen on a big back window and decided to stroll on in and check things out.
Still newly wed, we sustained the loss of my husband’s sister in the shelter of that sturdy old house. We brought our babies home to that house and watched them each sit up, say their first words, and take their first franken-like steps in that space.
When we no longer fit in it, toys and trappings of young children crowding that space we decided to find bigger quarters. A creature who loves the safety and comforts of home, I struggled, and could barely say goodbye to it.
I find myself, all these years later, in the safety and comfort of the second space I longed to make my home. Every days it is a blessing to look out the window and to give thanks for this space. The space that our children have now all left, but that belongs to us and that I hope is a welcome harbor to them and their families when they visit.
I’m grateful for the ability to write this. It has afforded me the opportunity to properly giving thanks for that old home. A family was created there. I became a mother there. Some of my happiest memories took place there. It is forever a part of my heart.
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