The work of God goes on quite simply in this way; one does not always have to wait for something out of the ordinary. The all-important thing is to keep your eyes on what comes from God and to make way for it to come into being here on earth. If you always try to be heavenly and spiritually minded you won’t understand the everyday work God has you to do. But if you embrace what is to come from God, if you live for Christ’s coming in practical life, you will learn that divine things can be experienced here and now, things quite different from what you human brains can ever imagine.

–from “Action in Waiting” by Christopher Friedrich Blumhardt


Oh, the story of my life. I am like the fish frantically swimming around asking every being she meets to please tell her what water is. I know I am the source of my problem. The answer…I think I know that too…surrender, surrender, surrender. Like that fish, if I didn’t have my head in the clouds I could feel, really experience and truly know all about the water that surrounds me. What is it going to take for me to release control?

For me, right now, the problem is that I cannot accept my life as it is. It is the fact that for the last year and a half I have lived in a separate city from by husband. I know this intellectually. I understand the reasons it must be, but each time he leaves after a brief visit or I return from visiting him, I grieve it all over again. I spend days at a time wishing it weren’t so. I expend precious energy denying it and fighting it.

It also comes in the form of long stretches of empty days before me. Long days with no seeming purpose other than to be there at the end of the day when daughters return. I can and do fill them somehow but still, they never seem to add up to much. I can and do fight this reality. I expend precious energy wishing it were different. I beat myself up for not being able to “oprahfy” myself. I start projects and volunteer. These things help a little but they cannot camouflage what is real for long…this is my life.

It is hard to imagine that, as Blumhardt suggests, God is actually sending work my way, important work, and I just don’t see it. I am truly saddened that on most days I don’t allow myself to fall into the flow of Grace. I know I should learn the lesson of the fish. It doesn’t drown. It may not know what water is, but it trusts it will be there for support when it surrenders.

Inspiration from the week

Message from the Hopi Elders


Also, these words of William Stafford as quoted by John O’Donoghue (speaking about his own book, Beauty: The Invisible Embrace)

The things you do not have to say make you rich.

Saying the things you do not have to say weakens your talk.

Hearing the things you do not need to hear dulls your hearing.

The things you know before you hear them, those are you and this is the reason you are in the world.   

from Crossing Unmarked Snow

I and You and all of us, more than enough


by Danna Faulds


It’s enough to offer love,

no matter how imperfectly

received or given. It’s

enough to try and fail at

a difficult task; enough

to fall and rise, stumble,

fall again, sigh, and start

to walk, however slowly,

in the direction the soul

points. It’s enough to

seek peace and find pain,

to gain nothing but a

vision of truth, and take

the long route home.


It’s enough to feel

temptation, the dance

of the senses, the hot

pull of desire; enough

to call on God, walk

through fire, sleep and

cry and fear or welcome

dying. It’s enough to be

and breathe, to feel the

touch of wind on skin.


It’s enough to take the

day as it comes, to watch

the ripples on the lake as

the rock sinks to the

bottom, to see the wild

reflection of the surface

calm into a mirror once

again. It’s enough to

hear the voice of fear

and hide- or seek it out

and face the shame or

shadows. It’s enough

to set out to tame demons

and watch them multiply

instead. It’s enough to

be buffeted by the winds

of change and not blown

over. I and you and all

of us, more than enough.


It is not lost on me that it was about a year ago that I began this blog. One of the central questions for me at the time was, “Am I enough?” Looking back I have heard God answer my question over and over, sometimes subtly in the tender touch of a breeze, loudly in the raucous laughter around the dinner table, and even clearly in the written or spoken words of a spiritual guide. And still I stubbornly ask for a sign. Last Friday, attending a day of reflection with a friend, the answer came again, this time with an undeniable, outrageous clarity. I share it with you now because it wasn’t just for me, it was our answer. During a break in the day I went to an art room where I created this collage in response to the revolutionary words of the poem.




Before the Sun

I heard this song on one of my Pandora stations a few weeks ago and finally tracked it down. I know its about a human relationship but some of the lyrics resounded in my depths as I recognized my own relationship with the Divine.

It reminds me of the game of chicken I play, always being the first one to veer away from deep union.   “Hope’s awake while fear is fast asleep,” she sings, “before we remember how to be afraid, before it gets hard to believe, before we count up what this will cost…before the present to the past is lost…we’ll leave this room, say good-bye to soon, watch another chance go by…why don’t you and I walk the wire this time?”

I hear God calling in this song, beckoning me to stay, not to be my own enemy, constantly giving into fear.   Perhaps you hear it too.

Before the Sun by Shannon Curtis

Dreams and limbs entangled in a heap of perfect peace

Hope’s awake while fear is fast asleep

But morning is a thief

So before the sun crawls in through the shades

Before we remember how to be afraid

Before it gets too hard to believe

Lay here with me

Before we count up what this will cost

Before the present to the past is lost

And all that’s left is a faint memory

Lay here with me

Enemies take what we need and sell well-worn lies

I’m my own worst of these, I can’t say why

Cause we’ll leave this room

Say goodbye too soon

Watch another chance go by

So before the sun crawls in through the shades

Before we remember how to be afraid

Before it gets too hard to believe

Lay here with me

Before we count up what this will cost

Before the present to the past is lost

And all that’s left is a faint memory

Lay here with me

Space and time have conspired

to bring us something good

Could be right

So why don’t you and I

Walk the wire this time?

So before the sun crawls in through the shades

Before we remember how to be afraid

Before it gets too hard to believe

Lay here with me

Before we count up what this will cost

Before the present to the past is lost

And all that’s left is a faint memory

Lay here with me

Stay here with me

A Gentle Spirit

O Christ of the Lowly Ones

Possessing no power

Save a truth deep within,

God’s anawim linger long

Over that truth

They receive rather than take.

O Christ of the Lowly Ones

Create in me a gentle, open spirit.



Jesus was so gentle. He never beat people over the head with the truth. He always let them choose. In fact, for the first time recently, listening to a homily, I was asked to consider that the reason Jesus told those he cured not to tell anyone was because he saw the value and the need for each person to know and experience for themselves. Jesus placed a value on letting us discover the truth on our own. Isn’t it one of the best aha moments ever to be able to say with Jacob, “You were here all along and I never knew.”

Jesus wasn’t frantic with his message or anxious at the state of the world or his life, although he struggled in the garden and got angry at injustice in the temple. In the end he was powerless to save his own life. I know a certain powerlessness and an only choice to accept what is. There is such blessing and ultimate freedom in that state of powerlessness. While that awareness is too fleeting, I am as grateful as a person can be for the moments I am aware and graced enough to surrender.

I desire a gentle and open spirit, too.



The Poor in Spirit

The Feast of All Saints often brings with it the Beatitudes, beautiful words that Jesus preached on a mountain top or on the plains, depending on which gospel you read. On this All Saints Day I read the words with the same yearly dread and unease. For me, the Beatitudes read like a laundry list of what I am not. (Even as I write this, on some level I know that this is another sign of my sick obsession with my faults and failings.) Nevertheless, I read this to-do list for how to inherit the kingdom and can check none of these off as completed, done. Striving for…maybe…on my good days…seeking…for sure…the desire for…definitely.

I seek out a friend to help me put it all in the proper perspective. I know that Macrina Wiederkehr has a section on the Beatitudes in her book, Seasons of Your Heart: Prayers and Reflections. Here in fact I find the most amazing prayer, The Prayer of the Beatitude, for a seeker, a desirer, a striver like me:

Blessed are the poor in Spirit for theirs is the kingdom of God

O Christ of the Poor in Spirit

They have no light of their own

No wealth of their own

Yet because of your glory

Shining within them

They will be known in the Kingdom of God.

O Christ of the Poor in Spirit

Create in my crowded heart

A space for God.

I stop and think. What would that look like in my own life? Does it mean giving away all my possessions and living in literal poverty? That doesn’t seem to make sense for me. I share the duties of head of household and have responsibilities to those in my care. It may, however, mean that I not allow myself to become possessed by the trappings of our life, letting the wants, the have to haves and the shoulds take me over. Why is it that when we look back on the best time, the happiest time in our lives, we recall most often the point at which we were living the most simply. I know I think of that first one-bedroom apartment with the handed-down sofa covered in a sheet and the little television resting on a cardboard box. It was a sparse time but a simple time and looking back, I also sense its freedom.

I also know that when the needs were greater, I was relieved of this illusion that I am self-sufficient, proficient and in need of no one. Somehow this illusion grows exponentially with material wealth and possessions. And when I was closer to that “one-pay-check-away-from-disaster” reality I had more compassion for those in similar positions. So, even though I don’t feel I qualify for Jesus’ praise as one who is poor is Spirit, I do desire those qualities. I want to dig and dig until there is the deepest, darkest space for God within me