Saturday, October 31, 2020

Moving On...

 Dear Friends...

I wanted to post to let you know that I have started writing for a publication called Treasure Valley Prays. Early in the pandemic lockdown, the ELCA pastors and leaders developed this website as a way to gather in a new way as we could not gather in person. This effort has been a wonderful growth opportunity for me and requires all of my creative juices so I haven't been doing my regular blog posts lately. The webpage is a beautiful source of spiritual strength and good ideas--please visit at:

Treasure Valley Prays 

If you'd like, please visit my page within TV Prays here:

Treasure Valley Prays--Heidi Gainan

Friday, August 28, 2020

The Next Thing

 "Wisdom consists in doing the next thing you have to do, doing it with your whole heart, and finding delight in doing it."

Meister Eckhart, (as quoted on Pray-As-You-Go)

If that isn't just what I needed this morning! Much as the lesson of the labyrinth, I need to take this crazy time one step at a time. If I overthink everything, which I tend to do regularly, I will miss the beauty of NOW. And all my fretting and stewing about later won't do any good anyway. I waste time trying to figure out the Bigger Picture when it is not mine to figure out. Each day at school is still a mystery. Each time I walk into our little para quarters something is different, much like the tasks  and events of the day. I arrive at noon, so that means there's been a whole morning of shenanigans before I get there! I laughed out loud when I walked in and saw my coworkers using a PE mat between their work spaces to cut down on the sound, as we are all on Google Meets, sometimes concurrently. If I sit and try to anticipate all the twists and turns of the labyrinthian day ahead, I'll work myself into a real lather. Instead, like, wise mystic Meister Eckhart says, I only need to do the very next thing with all my heart, and find delight doing it. I need to be pliable, open and willing to do that next thing. And, having that kind of breeziness about it all, will give me and everyone around me more delight! Blessings on your final August weekend! Love, heidi

Friday, August 21, 2020

The dry bones...

 "The hand of the Lord came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones; there were many lying in the valley and they were very dry."

Ezekiel 37:1-2

Doesn't it feel like we are living in a "dry bones" time right now? We may feel tired and dry prayer-wise and our lives are so topsy-turvy we may feel life-less. There feels like much "less" of life right now for so many. And yet, God takes Ezekiel to this creepy field and tells him to prophesy over the dry bones. Tell them I will raise them, love them and care for them, God says. As I prayed with this reading, I pictured the ominous visions we see each day--the pictures of the busy ICUs with people desperately working to save others. I picture the empty classrooms at our school; the faces of students only present in little boxes on a monitor. I picture empty stadiums and ballparks, the empty fairgrounds where the fair was to be this week. I picture the sad faces of people who cannot provide for their families due to job loss. But God reminds me in my prayer that we are beloved. God will cause breath and life to raise us out of this difficult time and set us aright again. I can't help notice how God involves Ezekiel! God wanted Ezekiel to be part of this huge healing project. Ezekiel had a role to play in the dry bones coming to life. As do we. What is our part in the healing of this dry bones time? What words of life can we speak over our dry day? What encouragement and positivity can we bring to any situation we may be in? The field of dry bones comes to life at Ezekiel's prophetic words and God's breath. I feel so strongly that this dry bones field of 2020 will do the same. Let's listen for the words of God tell us what we are to do to help care for and restore each other. Love, heidi

Friday, August 14, 2020

No Fear!

"Surely God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid, for the Lord is my strength and my might; God has become my salvation."

Isaiah 12:2

This is so what I'm feeling these days. We started working at school this week and school officially begins Monday. We are beginning online, which seems wise, since we have an uptick in virus here. There is excitement in the air, but also a  bit of foreboding. When I ask someone how they're doing, they may say "Fine, you?" Or they may cloud over a bit and say, "I'm OK. Not great." I mentioned to a coworker as we made copies in the workroom, "Didn't we take 'normal' for granted all that time we had it?" Wouldn't normal feel good about now? Starting online takes much of the exciting air out of the school-starting balloon. It feels a bit deflated. But! Good thing I read this today, because I can take it to heart all day. I will trust and not be afraid. I will relax (a bit) in strength gleaned from God. I trust that I am right where God wants me, doing what God wants me to do. Since God got me into this, God will give me whatever I need to navigate it for the kids' sake. Oh, how I wish we could see them in person--their new school shoes, shiny faces, and newly-acquired summer height. Until then, we need to trust that God is guiding the scientists and Smart People who are working on this...I will trust and not be afraid...Love, heidi

Saturday, August 8, 2020

I Give You My Heart...

 "Lord I give you my heart, I give you my soul. 

I live for you alone.

Every breath that I take every moment I'm awake,

Lord, have your way in me."

Reuben Morgan, "I Give You My Heart"

My first day of retreat, the first line of this song ran through my head. Now, mind you, I hadn't sung this song or even heard it for at least ten years! In fact, I was trying to fill in the gaps of it and kept getting the tune mixed up with a pop song. But, the first line was worth investigating because it said exactly how I felt that first day at Marymount. Thanks to Spotify, I found it and prayed with it all week! It was such a gift to be able to put my feelings into a song--well, I didn't, but Reuben Morgan did and I thank him from the bottom of my heart! I invite you to click the link below and listen to this splendid version by Chris Bethel of "I Give You My Heart." Take a minute or two to pray with this song and just give your heart the One who holds and cherishes it. Love, heidi

I Give You My Heart

Sunday, August 2, 2020

The power of waiting...

"Never underestimate the power of simply waiting for grace."
Sr. Macrina Wiederkehr, OSB, "Abide" (as quoted in Give Us This Day)

This is so true and doesn't it feel like what we are living through right now? Simply waiting...and waiting. For things to get better, for the virus to slow down, for our jobs to start, for things to return to something closer to normal. It's so hard to know what to do during this waiting time, too. I'm more of a do-er than a wait-er. All this waiting around can be very uncomfortable for me! But, as Sr. Macrina says, there is power in the waiting. The waiting hones us and prepares us, like the crystallis gives the future butterfly the time to get strong and be able to survive outside. This time is beneficial for us, even as it may feel it isn't. When I think of all that has gone on since March, it feels like three years instead of a few months. But we don't know the extent of the good that is happening deep within. There is deep good happening and we need to simply trust God that it is true. Our second reading today was St. Paul to the Romans, "...nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God." (Romans 8:39) Good to know! Even this difficult time is not capable of separating us from the love of God. God loves us all the more--that the one thing we needn't fret about.

Friends, I feel I want to apologize to you for being fairly absent this summer. It's not that I'm not doing the readings, or praying, or any-of-it. It has been hard to try to always be a positive voice through all of this and I believe positive voices are needed. I can get discouraged and frustrated with all that is going on and passing that along seems rather unhelpful. I'm headed up to Marymount tomorrow for five days of deep peace and contemplation. You will all be in my prayers and I hope to return with good stuff to share in future posts. For those you don't know, I have been writing for Treasure Valley Prays, a rich offering by the ELCA community here in the Treasure Valley...the link to the site is here:
My love and prayers, heidi