Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Relax and surrender...

"We are passing on the very love of God from age to age...This is the joining of hands from generation to generation that can and will change the world."
Fr. Richard Rohr, Daily Meditation, 12/21/16

Whenever I prepare to gather with family for the holidays, I always pray that I will be (as my mother put it) a "good girl." I don't want to be crabby or contrary, demanding or easily flummoxed. I just want everyone to have a great time! Well, today's Richard Rohr reflection gave me a much better prayer, which I will take with me into the family throng.  I pray to surrender to the great flow of God's Love.  I certainly don't earn or achieve God's love, but only need to surrender to it.  I only need to let go and allow this Love to pass through me to others.  If I can stop thinking of it as something I "do" but only something I surrender "to," I will get it.  Gracious God of Gatherings and Celebrations, please remind me through the next several days to let go and surrender to You. Help me to stop with my own agenda and remember that I need only relax in Your love that is like an ocean surrounding me.  I have everything I will ever need to pass this Love on to whomever I meet through these Holy-days.  And to you, Dear Friends, I wish you peace and oceans of Love...until next week, love, heidi

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Everyone is given a gift...

"There the Lord himself will give you this sign: the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall name him Emmanuel."
Isaiah 7:14

Last night I had my annual viewing of the movie, "The Nativity Story." It is my favorite because of how beautiful and real it is. Each year I seem to glean a little more gold from it and last night was no exception! There is a scene when Mary and Joseph are nearing Bethlehem and an old shepherd invites them to warm by his fire. Mary thanks him for his kindness and the shepherd tells her that his father used to say that everyone is given a gift. Hers is the child she carries in her womb. "What is your gift?" Mary asks the shepherd. Her tells her he is still waiting to find it. After the birth of Jesus, the shepherds begin to come to the cave to see what the angels have proclaimed to them and the old shepherd is among them. Mary sees him and he tenderly, yet hesitantly, reaches out to touch the tiny baby in her arms.  His hand is dirty and shaky as he reaches out for the baby. Just when you think Mary would pull the new baby closer to her, away from the dirty hand, Mary extends the baby toward the shepherd and says "He is for all people...Everyone is given a gift." It reminded me of Jesus' ministry, extending himself to the poor and the lowly, just as his mother extended him for the poor shepherd to touch with his shaking, dirty hand.  It makes me tear up just typing this, Friends. Our God came as one of us to reach out to the poor...let's ponder that today. Love, heidi

Monday, December 19, 2016

The wait drags on...

"Then, when his days of ministry were completed, he went home."
Luke 1:23

This sentence jumped out at me this morning.  The story is of Zechariah, while serving as a priest in the temple for a certain period of time, sees a vision of the angel Gabriel telling him his elderly wife will bear a son.  He questions the angel about the logistics and is struck mute for his doubting (which strikes me as a bit harsh). And then...even after all this, he stays on to complete his priestly duties. He doesn't go home early. Wow! He waited until his service was over. That is awesome!  We are at the point of Advent when I'm over it. The Fourth Sunday is over, all four candles are lit, let's get this show on the road, as my mother would say. This last few days of Advent seem to drag on as if the celebration will never begin.  But, just like Zechariah, we may have a bit more service to complete before we call it good.  Maybe we have a bit more in-heart preparation to make.  The tree may be trimmed and the cards written and mailed (I wish!), but our in-heart prep may need a little more time.  Let's take a good look inside today, Friends.  How does our heart look? Ready for an important guest?  Love, heidi