Wednesday, February 20, 2019

The First Bible...

"For a true contemplative, a gratuitously falling leaf will awaken awe and wonder just as much as a golden tabernacle in a cathedral."
Fr. Richard Rohr, Daily Meditation, 2/20/19

I had a job interview last summer at a church. On the third interview I met with the Pastor of the parish and he asked me about my prayer life. I threw caution to the wind and explained that I sit in my treehouse and read the First Bible--nature.  I have a magnificent church beside my balcony, with squirrels and birds, teaching me about God. I didn't get the job. No matter, I got the job that was a better fit, but it was funny. So many times in my life God has shown me God's grandeur and beauty outside a church. God's presence is just as vivid for me to see in my tree. God also speaks to me, ever so clearly, while sitting on the porch of my little St. Helen's hermitage at Marymount. The chapel is nice too, on a rainy day, but being outside, with the sights and sounds of God's creation, is where I hear God's voice--and it's grand. Today's first reading from Genesis (Gen 8:6-13, 20-22) tells the story of Noah sending out the raven first and then the dove from the ark. Eventually, the dove returned to him with an olive branch in her beak. God speaks to us in creation, as sure as the snow is falling in Boiseville this morning! Let's get out in it and listen! Love, heidi

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Do you still not understand?

"(Jesus) said to them, 'Do you still not understand?'"
Mark 8:21

The disciples are concerned because they only brought one loaf of bread and they are in a boat with Jesus. I totally feel for them because that is a trivial thing I would get worked up about too, truth be told. Jesus uses the bread metaphorically and they sit, confused. Jesus has to remind them of all the miracles involving bread to help them feel secure they will not starve on this trip. It's easy to shake our heads at their cluelessness, isn't it? But, really, I am so much the same way. How often have I seen God-at-work in my life and yet, with each new little challenge, I can fret and stew better than any of the disciples. Last year, as I prepared to retire and move, I encountered issues that really drove me out to the ledge, and instead of remembering God's steady hand in all my other Big Stuff, I'd get all freaked out. This year, I can look back on that and grin, apologetically. Pray-As-You-Go asked the question, How do we feel Jesus responds to us in our stew? When we seem to still not get it? That, I know for sure, is easy. Jesus reacts lovingly and tenderly to me. I don't ever feel scolded or chastised for being me. Jesus understands me better than I understand myself. Jesus encourages me to peaceful calm. Jesus encourages me to pull my faith out and use it. And Jesus offers to help me get to where I need to be on the trust scale.  That makes it easier for me to get out there again and do what I do. We have a Champion in our corner!  Today, our February Tuesday (doesn't it seem like we've had a hundred February Tuesdays?) let's recognize that Jesus helps us grow into our best selves. Our best selves are already within us, in fact. Love, heidi