Thursday, March 1, 2018

For the love of God...

"More torturous than all else is the human heart, beyond remedy; who can understand it? I, the Lord, alone probe the mind and test the heart..."
Jeremiah 17:9-10

I was at a high school the other day, working with a student. We were in the hall as the bell rang and moved to the side, out of the way, as the students tumbled out of the classrooms to go to their next classes. I gazed at them...they had holes in their jeans and earbuds in their ears. Some chatted with friends, others intent on getting somewhere else, moved briskly. Sadly, all I could think of was someone with a rifle letting loose on them. I tried to shake that dreadful thought from my mind and just looked on them with love. I'm sure some of them left their homes with angry words still hanging in the air. I'm sure some of them had encounters they wouldn't want to be their last encounters. I felt such love for them and sadness for how vulnerable they were in that moment as they filled the halls. What is the message here? Well, I'm not sure. Maybe just that we are one human family and only God knows our hearts and minds, as Jeremiah offers us today. We are all like these precious teenagers in God's eyes, with all of our differences and similarities, we are all unique and deeply loved. As we tumble forth into our winter Thursday, some with holes in our jeans, earbuds in our ears, let us have love in our hearts for all we encounter today--for the love of God, please! Love, heidi

Tuesday, February 27, 2018


"By solving the puzzles of what stands before us, we rise to new levels of being."
Fr. Ed Hays, "The Lenten Labyrinth"

We don't have to find a cure for cancer today. We don't have to solve the puzzle of division in our country or nuclear war. We don't have to figure out the arms race or solve the problem of human trafficking in our Today, our puzzles may be bio-locating so we can be in two places at the same time, or getting dinner on the table in twenty minutes, or sitting at the bedside of a sick child or suffering with a friend. Our puzzles may seem small in comparison to the Big Stuff we worry about. But they still are puzzles and they still befuddle us. Today, whatever we face, let's talk it over with God. God already knows about it, but still wants to hear our take on it. Jesus often asked the people he was about to cure what it is they want (even if it seemed obvious). Our puzzles may seem obvious too, but Jesus wants us to talk them over. Maybe in talking them over, the solutions will be clearer. At the very least, in talking them over with Jesus we are in relationship with Jesus, and that's what God wants the most.  Love, heidi

Monday, February 26, 2018

God within us...

"Remember not against us the iniquities of the past;
may your compassion quickly come to us,
for we are brought very low."
Psalm 79:8

After a tragedy we are, indeed, brought very low. And there have been far too many human-caused tragedies lately, certainly. And, for a while, we are stunned, sad, we think about and pray for the victims and their families. And then, we move on. Other events litter the news pages and we go on to the next thing, whatever it is. We move on from our "very low-ness."I wonder if we are wired that way, because staying very low would kill us. We could become inert, unable to function. We need to move on, but I believe we move on as changed human beings. We may not be the same as we were prior to the tragedy that brought us low. And that is a good thing. Being brought low gives us the experience of compassion, the quivering of our hearts with another. Being brought low opens us up to others, taking us out of ourselves and giving us a tiny glimpse of how wounded God must feel with all the hurt we cause each other. Compassion for others and their experience teaches us how loved we are by God. God has wired our hearts to love, pure and simple. When our hearts ache with sadness for others, that is God within us, loving through us. Today, let's be aware how our hearts hurt when we learn of tragedy in the lives of others. There is no truer sign of God within us.  Love, heidi