Friday, May 4, 2018

The Way It Is...

The Way It Is
By William Stafford
There is a thread you follow. 
It goes among things that change.
But it doesn't change.
People wonder about what you are pursuing.
You have to explain about the thread.
But it is hard for others to see.
While you hold it you can't get lost.
Tragedies happen; people get hurt or die;
and you suffer and get old.
Nothing you do can stop times unfolding.
You don't ever let go of the thread.

I offer you this beautiful poem as a weekend meditation for your lovely spring weekend! It was a reflection for my Immortal Diamond class and, in itself, is great for mining deep within and asking ourselves, can we trace the thread we have followed throughout our lives? Where is the thread taking us next? Love, heidi

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Pruning the branches...

"Jesus said to his disciples, 'I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower. He takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit, and everyone that does he prunes so that it bears more fruit.'"
John 15:1-2

This was yesterday's Gospel and I'm still chewing on it today! Pray-As-You-Go asked what branches of ours do we see being pruned?  I sat with that a while and realized that this whole moving, retirement, life change thing I am going through is one big pruning. Some of my branches are being pruned to allow other branches to receive more nourishment and thus, become more fruitful.  It was lovely to recognize! And then I noticed, in my mental image of my branches, a lovely new little shoot, just sprouting. What's this? In addition to my branches of family, spiritual life and a life of simple service, this new little shoot is unknown to me now, but will also be enhanced and nourished as my branches of career and security are pruned.  It is exciting to think that this new little shoot will grow and flourish yet, is unknown to me now. Our lives are a continuous series of letting go and grasping onto something new. We need to let go, prune, if you will, the old; those branches have born their fruit already. New shoots await the nourishment that they can receive when we let go. Do you recognize any branches that need pruning? Love, heidi

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Always tethered...

"As long as I was tethered to him, I would never completely fall."
Fr. Tom Lankenau, SJ, Bronco Catholic homily

During his homily on Sunday, Fr. Tom described an experience he'd had climbing a climbing wall while blindfolded. He described the experience of slipping and missing the holds and the difficulty of the climb.  But he also described the experience of knowing that the instructor was holding onto the ropes and he would never completely plunge to the ground. Listening to the homily brought me to tears. I feel like I'm climbing blindfolded myself, at times (and I'm fairly OK doing stuff blindfolded!) But it is still uncomfortable. I'm missing some of the footholds and handholds, to continue with the rock climbing metaphor. And it's is disconcerting to me.  But it is also very good for me. I'm learning and growing and gaining strength as I'm growing on the vine. And, as Fr. Tom points out, I'm being prepared for producing good fruit. We are always tethered to God from God's side. From our side, we can slip and wiggle around, hanging from the support rope. But we can dangle secure, knowing that God always has hold of us.  If you would like to listen to the wonderful homilies offered from Bronco Catholic, click the link below. And happy Tuesday! Love, heidi
Bronco Catholic Preaching

Monday, April 30, 2018


"The answer to every prayer is the same; it's the gift of the Holy Spirit. That's not, maybe, healing Grandma right away. But if there is an influx of the Spirit, then God  has answered the prayer."
Fr. Richard Rohr, "Immortal Diamond" course materials

I can't tell you what this did to me when I heard it as part of my CAC course a couple of weeks ago. It's like all the world made sense to me in one little paragraph. It explains how God is active and vibrant in our lives, without necessarily manipulating events, when we ask for this or that.  It sent me scurrying to remember the gifts of the Holy Spirit and the fruits of the Spirit, which all weave together to perfectly demonstrate how God answers prayer. Fr. Rohr points out the passage in Luke where Jesus says, " much more will the Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask?" (Luke 11:13).  Praying for the Holy Spirit makes sense to me, but the idea of every prayer being answered with the Holy Spirit feels new. No matter what we pray for, the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit are the answer. We may pray for healing, for example, and the Holy Spirit gives us the gift of understanding and the fruits of patience and peace as we heal. This seems huge for me, Friends!  As I have grown in faith, I can appreciate how God helps us from the inside, giving us whatever we need to live our lives. All we need is the Holy Spirit.  And, in today's Gospel, Jesus assures us, "The Advocate, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you." (John 14:26) Love, heidi