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Evening Prayer – 27 September 2020

The sun has set and the Vesper Lights flicker and glow

A lovely day of virtual worship

Time spent studying for class

Enjoying time spent with my sweetheart

Is our puppy spoiled? Yep!

Now as my eyelids grow heavy

I lift this humble prayer to you

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

A wee prayer from the heart of your Padre…

Hope in God’s Love – A Reflection

Atlanta Botanical Gardens

As I continue to journey through my Narrative Leadership course I am being challenged to re-examine the narrative of my life. There is the narrative which I have been told. There is the narrative which I have believed. There is the narrative yet to be explored.

At 60 I am re-visiting my story and being open to Spirit’s guidance. Just because it is a narrative I have believed or that has been forced upon me, doesn’t mean that it is the story of my life. In 2020, we have gone back to the table in terms of what Church looks like. In 2020 we moved across the country to a new call. In the midst of the chaos, Spirit continues to speak, inspire, and guide us.

In my very limited spare time, I am sometimes able to revisit Thomas Merton through his book No Man Is an Island. Thanks to Spirit, he spoke to me tonight. He speaks of love and hope; a message for our times.

Better than hoping for anything from the Lord, besides His love, let us place all our hope in His love itself. — p. 17

In the midst of the pandemic and a nasty divisiveness in our nation and world, may we look to something beyond ourselves. In God’s love we find sustenance and strength for the journey. In the command to love God and neighbor we must find our mission. As a Christ-follower I can do no more and certainly cannot do less.

Evening Prayer – 26 September 2020

The sun has set and the Vesper Lights flicker and glow

Even though it was a lot of driving

It was good to be with Denise’s father and brother for a few hours for lunch

As we drove back, Sister Moon was guiding us home

Such beauty above us

Such beauty around us

Thank you Lord, for these gifts of wonder and awe

Now as my eyelids grow heavy

I lift this humble prayer to you

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

A wee prayer from the heart of your Padre…

Evening Prayer – 25 September 2020

From the Atlanta Botanical Gardens

The sun has set and the Vesper Lights flicker and glow

It has been an eventful day, Lord

It has also been a day to relax a bit

Looking through recent photos from the Atlanta Botanical Gardens

Walking along the Carrollton Green Belt

A beautiful hawk on the Greenbelt

Savoring the beauty and wonder of your Creation

Thank you for such a precious gift, Lord

Now as my eyelids grow heavy

I lift this humble prayer to you

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

A wee prayer from the heart of your Padre…

Sojourner’s Verse and Voice – 25 September 2020

Verse of the day

Therefore, my beloved, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. — 1 Corinthians 15:58 (NRSV)

Voice of the day

Real change, enduring change, happens one step at a time. — Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Prayer of the day

Almighty God, may we look to you for the strength, endurance, and patience we need to make meaningful change a reality.

Anger – John Valters Paintner

“Anger can be a natural reaction to the world. Sometimes the anger is righteous and other times it is not. And some of us struggle with it more than others. But we are not defined by our biological reaction to that which upsets us. Our actions are what define us.”

 John Valters Paintner, MTS The Online, Self-Study Retreat ~ Exile and Coming Home: An Archetypal Journey through the Scriptures 

How self-aware are you of your anger and its roots? Can you channel it so that its fruits become love?

Statio – Christine Valters Paintner

“In the monastic tradition there is a practice called statio, which is the commitment to stop one thing before beginning another. Imagine that instead of rushing from one appointment to the next you pause between each one and breathe just five long, slow breaths.” 

 Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, The Wisdom of the Body: A Contemplative Journey to Wholeness for Women

Before exiting this blog, pause and take five long, slow breaths. What happens when you intentionally pause?

Leadership and Service – Cornell West

“You can’t lead the people if you don’t love the people. You can’t save the people if you don’t serve the people.” —Cornel West

This quote comes from a daily email I receive from Pace e Bene Nonviolence Service

Contemplative as Activist – Kenneth Leech

The contemplative is more of a threat to injustice than the social activist who merely sees the piecemeal need. For contemplative vision is revolutionary vision, and it is the achievement of this vision which is the fruit of true spiritual direction. A spirituality of clear vision goes hand in hand with love. To see with the eyes of God is to see truthfully and lovingly. Such a love is not sentimental or naïve: it is a love which undermines oppression and burns away illusion and falsehood, a love which has been through the fire, a love which has been purified through struggle. It is a love which has known solitude and despair. — From Leech’s book Soul Friend as shared by my friend and colleague, Rev. Chris Glaser in his blog Progressive Christian Reflections.

Stillness in Nature – Christine Valters Paintner

“When you bring your attention to something in nature, whether a tree or a stone or a creature, and bring yourself fully present to it, you can sense its inner stillness, meeting a place of stillness in your own heart. You can experience how much it rests in the great Being who holds all of us, with no divisions, and in that awareness you discover that place within you as well.”

 Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, Earth, Our Original Monastery: Cultivating Wonder and Gratitude through Intimacy with Nature

How does this image of Earth as original scripture, as the first text we meet long before we encounter the holy books, alter not just your understanding of the earth, but of you too as a creature of the earth?