Perhaps it's the call of autumn, the crisp cool air, the brilliant colors...that set my mind to reflective mode. Here are some meditative excerpts from my journals for this September day in years past. These are meant to stir reflection, not well suited to soundbites, bumper stickers, or speed reading:
After reading Gerard Manley Hopkins: “As Kingfishers Catch Fire, Dragonflies Draw Flame”
Are you being who you are? Can you see Christ playing? That is not a misspelling. Can you imagine Christ as One who *plays* - not just the holy icon that prays, but, rather, the Person who plays, like you, like the human He is.
A word to the wise is...unnecessary.
A visit to Blue Rock Wildlands, southwest of Calgary
Popular religion focuses so hard on spiritual success that most of us do not know the first thing about the spiritual fruits of failure. When we fall ill, lose our jobs, wreck our marriages, or alienate our children, most of us are left alone to pick up the pieces. Even those of us who are ministered to by brave friends can find it hard to shake the shame of getting lost in our lives. And yet if someone asked us to pinpoint the times in our lives that changed us for the better, a lot of those times would be wilderness times. ~ Barbara Brown Taylor
Grateful to be in Buhler, Kansas, my father's childhood hometown, celebrating with family the life of my lovely Aunt Jane Nickel, 97 years faithful, now heaven's treasure.
"That odd feeling when you realize that countless moments of your life, significant and small, are woven into the fabric of a place and its surroundings." ~Michele Phoenix
“I was hiding behind what was smart and it kept me from doing what was right."
~Sasha Dichter: The Generosity Experiment (on TED.com)
Sometimes I feel like I speak a different language. I don't play online games, I don't watch much TV, I rarely go to movies, I don't listen to the radio, I don't read fiction. I work hard, I love to hike, camp, swim, take photographs, write poetry, sing. I like to find positive quotes, learn best practices, follow leadership blogs, tech gadgets, but most of all, I like listening to and connecting with people.
If you can find a path without obstacles, it probably doesn't lead anywhere.
"…let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart
with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit,
"My times are in thy hand" Feeling stressed and harried trying to meet the priorities of others? Read how David felt in Psalm 31, it just might resonate.
Abundance: A walk in achingly beautiful creation, the trailing remnants of summer warm against autumn's brilliant glow, physical pain remedied by skillful massage therapy, conversation with good friends, capped off by an evening study of sonnets. What beauty will you see today?
What beauty will you see today?
Photo credit: personal collection