Friday, April 1, 2016

From the inside out...

"Cleaning and Restoration."

It's such a simple phrase on the side of a truck.  The place next door to me that flooded in January is finally being restored. After three months, the time has come to begin rebuilding what the flood had destroyed. My place was repaired in just a short time, but the one next door, where the flood originated, needs to be restored--from the studs out. At this point, I'm not even bothered by the huge truck blocking the driveway delivering sheetrock. There is just such relief and joy that something can be rebuilt, refurbished, restored.  It's all so God-ish! God does the same for us when we feel tired, listless and sad. When our lives get too hum-drum and predictable; when our spiritual lives grow uninspiring. God can build us back up from the inside out.  All it takes is a little surrender, silence, and a wee bit of prayer-ful elbow grease. God loves to refurbish our tired little souls! Let's give God the chance this weekend! It's still Easter! love, heidi

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Jesus in the ordinary

"Then the two recounted what had taken place on the way and how he was made known to them in the breaking of the bread."
Luke 24:35

The disciples were able to recognize Jesus in the mundane, ordinary human activity of sharing a meal. Jesus didn't appear to the disciples all glowing and bangled after he had risen. It wasn't like the little kid who, when asked what Jesus' first words were after he'd risen, said, "Ta Da!" It wasn't like in "Jesus Christ Superstar;" Jesus appearing in dazzling white and glory. Jesus must have appeared very ordinary if the disciples didn't even recognize him. We know that Jesus appeared still bearing the wounds of his Passion. We know that Jesus made himself known to those he loved by eating and drinking with them. The usual stuff. So, if that is the case, couldn't Jesus make himself known to us in our daily, mundane activities, too? As we are learning, sharing, working with others? Even celebrating with others? (I would say ESPECIALLY in celebrating with others!) I would venture to say that Jesus is present in all we will see in our day today...let's keep an eye out! Love, heidi

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

See the Gardener...

"Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you laid him, and I will take him."
John 20:15

Oddly, the thing that struck me when I read this today wasn't the usual insight, like Jesus being unrecognizable there by the tomb. I was wondering how Mary Magdalene thought she could manage carrying the body of Jesus should this "gardener" show her where the body now was.  I sat with that a while and realized that in her profound and desperate grief, she was completely unrealistic.  Grief does that to us. Love does that to us. Seriously grieving the one we love deeply can do that to us.  We are completely beside ourselves.  And Jesus comes to comfort us...calls us by name as he did Mary in this Gospel and suddenly we see him.  Today, there are people in our own midst who may be suffering this type of grief and sadness.  Let us open our hearts to them and give comfort as we can.  And let's open our eyes to the "gardener" we may see on our early spring Tuesday.  Love, heidi

Sunday, March 27, 2016

He is Risen! He is loose!

"Jesus is loose!"
Sr. Melannie Svoboda, "Living Faith"
I love this story Sr. Melannie recounts about a first grade teacher who asks her students what the Empty Tomb means to us.  One little guy shouts out, "Jesus is loose!" Yea, Baby...that's it! I sat down and thought about what it means to have Jesus loose in my little life.  What's that about? It means that Jesus is totally accessible to us at any time.  Now that he's risen, now that he's loose, he's totally HERE. It started out slowly for me. A few words of comfort during a difficult time of my life.  I was driving to Challis, stewing about the problem du jour, and there they were in my head: words of comfort that weren't my own. I almost drove off the road.  They were comforting, peace-filled and I hung on each one. I wrote them down later and re-read them often. They were Jesus' words to me at just the perfect time.  Since hearing Jesus that time it's become much easier and more frequent, thanks be to God.  The other day I even heard a good-natured chiding for trying to whistle a church song. "Just turn the radio on, heidi, please, your whistling is killing me!" So, yes, I totally get that Jesus is risen so he is available to us all the time.  To comfort us, to encourage us, maybe even challenge us. Surely, to chuckle at our whistling.  Jesus is Risen.  Enjoy his presence! Love, heidi