Posted on Wednesday, January 30th, 2008
I wrote this poem in Starbucks after dropping off my son at school.
What does a twelve year-old
Dream with his head resting,
Silent in route to school,
Moments snatched between
Study review of notes
For a test this morning?
What stimulates learning,
Causes us to apply,
Focus attention on
A fact, concept, theory
Unknown to us earlier -
Or is the query Who?
Are our dreams and learning
Intertwined as hemp rope,
Snatching treasures so deep,
The teacher, mentor, seer,
Inspiring flight beyond?
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Posted on Wednesday, January 23rd, 2008
January 23, 2008
Scripture: But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31
Prayer: Dear Lord, teach me about hope.
Response: There is much to tell you about hope. Before defining it, hope takes seed in your heart. And in the heart hope manifests your recognition of me, prompted by my grace to you. It is as if you are standing before the classroom, alone, and you proclaim your confidence in what you heart sometimes most faintly is certain.
It is like being off the coast and a deep fog settles over your craft. You hear a fog horn and know intuitively from where the sound originates indicating the narrow channel to the safe harbor.
Here is another image. Hope is moving across a rope bridge swaying above a chasm and finding a rhythm in your steps that does not move against the rhythm of the bridge as you move to the other side and safety.
Hope is, as I have said, certainty in a storm that no matter of fear or agitation that surrounds can distract you from your goal.
And see what I promise besides. In hope your strength is renewed. As you expend effort, empty yourself, you find that I fill you with strength for the arduous path, so that you soar, exhilarating and accelerating on the wind, abandoning all the constraints that those land-bound choose for themselves, and you journey endlessly without any glimmer of fatigue, and let me say encouraged by the good humor you display
It is through hope that we meet. Hope is the completed circle of my love in you. In hope you raise a banner for all to see and for me to meet.
All for this day.
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Posted on Monday, January 21st, 2008
Scripture: “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts.” Jeremiah 31:33Prayer: Give me a deep understanding of this verse.
Response: Appreciate that these words in context concern the new covenant, one that is not limited by a collection of do’s and don’ts, Rather, imprinted on your heart and mind is an echo presence that serves to validate your deepest longings, especially when you bring them to action, to consciousness.
You might want to call it intuition, inspiration, conscience, the muse, or a voice not further identified, but each has the spark that can lighten your way if you choose.
The feeling, it just seems right, reflects that spark, but it is more than that. You agree graced with the capacity that is not bounded to embrace my love in action and service. Don’t see this grace as something outlandish, or exaggerated. As with things profound, the imprint of my love is simple.
You will gain confirmation of this writing on your heart when you pause, draw a breath, and be in a moment of time, allowing your intuition to guide your reflection upon any issue that you choose. By that very deliberation action you tap into the flow of discernment for which you are searching.
What makes this discovery special is that it becomes proof for you that my covenant with you is deliberate and real.
Without exception, you all have written on your hearts this prescription. It is for you, each of you, to recognize these words and to follow the direction as it applies to your path.
If you believe only that you enjoy a special relationship with me, that is sufficient and more than enough to devote some time to fathoming the meaning for you.
All for today.
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Posted on Wednesday, January 16th, 2008
Scripture: We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. 1 Thessalonians 1:2
Prayer: And what of prayer?
Response: Good question for this morning. How often do you pray to have your burden eased, or to seek a clarification in the direction upon which you are committed? Today, I want to discuss the prayers that you offer for other fellow travelers on this road, some of whom, or most of whom, you do not even know.
In prayer you recognize a community of love that extends beyond the fingertips of your individual grasp or touch. In the very act of prayer your gaze rises from your toes to embrace those around you and far distant.
It is through prayer for others that you are released to become one of generous spirit. Such prayer is so generous, especially since the object of your prayer is unaware of your intention. Though you are offering so much to another you receive ten fold in return because of this generosity and service.
In such prayer you will find that your eyes soften and you are filled with a growing compassion for those less fortunate who populate the earth, sometimes far distant. And interesting, you begin to discern signs that your prayers and intentions are having an impact on the actions and situations of others.
Prayer is most powerful, a hidden source of love of which you all have been beneficiaries, especially when you have endured much. Prayer as a sign of my love is joy to the person in prayer as it is for the recipient of the prayerful intention – even a stranger.
Prayer knits a community together and let me say there is no boundary as to how large the community can be. As I said, prayer manifests the unfolding of my love.
So take seriously and personally the power of prayer. Reflect on the prayers that might have been intended for you, and in gratitude return the favor in prayer.
Prayer has the potential to take you out of self.
All for [...]
Posted on Tuesday, January 15th, 2008
One morning last week I recalled for some reason the daily walks I would take early in the morning from my home in West Virginia up a steep hill about a mile distant. It was soon after my spouse had passed. These walks served in retrospect the healing process. I want to share a poem I wrote recently that commemmorates this ritual. For more clarification on the “groans,” see Praying Fingertips for January 12.
There is a hill out there
To climb each morning
In grief – aloneness.
Stiff steps in frost crunch
A somber drum roll
For one departed.
Higher and higher
Bent he works his way
Under sorrow’s burden.
To high summit
As groans escape,
Deep groans of sadness,
Into frosty air
Of gray-dawn shades.
Alone atop above,
He pauses – surveys
All before him past,
Just as bright glow -
The sunrise sudden -
Diffuses chilled fear,
Heals this soul once
Awash in a tunnel
Darkness of despair.
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