Saturday, February 27, 2010


This one is for Kim....
with whom I share the Lenten practice
of praying the Lord's Prayer....

You who dwell
at the heart of Creation,
and make yourself known to us.

Give us this day
life in its fullness.
Forgive us when we
deny it in others
as we forgive those
who take it from us.
Keep us from hopelessness
and despair and deliver us
into freedom.

For you are life,
and breath, body
and being in
every moment's


Antoinette Voute Roeder
Weaving the Wind

Thursday, February 25, 2010

More on Pilgrimage

My desire to slip away from the stories and the choices we make
to secure our identity in everyday life has borne fruit again and again.
To go on a pilgrimage, I discovered
you do not need to know what you are looking for,
only that you are looking for something,
and need urgently to find it.
It is the urgency that does the work,
a readiness to receive that finds the answers.

Janine Pommy Vega, Tracking the Serpent: Journeys to Four Continents.

art: Pilgrimage by Dee Guja. explore her art here.

Lenten Pilgrimage

Lent is the time of pilgrimage -
and that doesn't have to be
to some faraway foreign shore.
It can be as close as your own soul.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I - Spy

They who are conscious of their own sins
have no eyes
for the sins of their neighbors.

Abbot Moses

Monday, February 22, 2010

Edward Hays Lenten Prayer

From Prayers for a Planetary Pilgrim, by Edward Hays:

I thank you, O God,
for the warming of the winds
that brings a melting of the snow,
for daylight hours that daily grow longer
and richer in the aroma of hope.
Spring lingers beneath the horizon
as approaching echoes of Easter
ring in my ears.

I lift up my heart to you, Beloved,
in this season of Lent
that gently sweeps across
my sluggish and sleeping heart,
awakening me
to a deeper love for you.

May the wind of the Spirit
that drove Jesus into the desert,
into the furnace of prayer,
also drive me with a passion
during the Lenten season
to enkindle the fire of my devotion
in the desert of Lenten love.

Birds above, on migratory wings,
signal to an inner migration,
a message that draws me homeward bound
on Spirit's wings
to the heart of my Beloved.

May I earnestly use this Lenten season
to answer the inner urge
to return.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Lenten Wordle

This is a wordle of the top 100 things Twitterers
 are giving up for Lent.
The breakdown of the 15,000 tweets can be found on this website.
The font sizes are in direct correlation to the number
of people who claim to be giving that item up.

Here's what Sister Joan has to say:
"I gave up coffee creamer for Lent one year.
By the end of the tenth day, I began to love black coffee.
That's the year I learned that it isn't giving up things that counts.
Me? I became aware that only internal change really counts."
Joan Chittister

Thursday, February 18, 2010

desert experience?

If you therefore go to the desert
to be rid of all the dreadful people
and all the awful problems in your life,
you will be wasting your time.
You should go to the desert
for a total confrontation
with yourself.
Alessandro Pronzato, Meditations on the Sand

i'm loving the back of this camel's head.
and this quote is once again reminding me that when i'm angry or hurt,
 it's not the other person's problem - it's mine.
 i wonder what jesus was thinking as he was being lead into the desert by the holy spirit. 'finally, a moment's peace?'
or was he wondering how long he'd last without food and water?
did he know how long he'd be there?
and did he have any idea of how intense the temptations would be?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lent Begins...

I just read my Ash Wednesday post from last year as a reminder of where I was at spiritually at that time. It seems I was quite eager to enter Lent as my father had just died. A year later and there are days when it feels like years since he died and then there are some where it's still too fresh and close to the surface.  

Last Lent I was looking for a place to grieve and heading into the desert with Jesus for 40 days was a journey I was more than willing to embark upon, but this year I am obsessed with Spring - new life is popping up all around and after the darkest winter I can ever remember, I'm not ready for Lent. I'd like to move directly on to Easter but this is not the way of it.

This is one of the great parts of following a liturgical calendar.  IT'S NOT ABOUT ME! Lent is here if I'm ready or not and so I will set out on this journey towards the cross.  I have to remind myself about every 30 seconds that I wasn't created to follow my own whims but to answer a call - one that I have been ignoring for most of this past year. 

So this may be a difficult 40 days as far as my remaining in my own comfort zone goes, but it's time to step out of my own way and get into some "action" verbs such as "seek", "listen", "nourish" and "forgive."

Last night as last year's palms were burned for today's ashes, Elizabeth+ read the following prayer.  It's her adaptation of William Arthur Ward's lenten prayer and it's one that I invite you to add your own line to:

Fasting and Feasting

Fast from worry; Feast on trust.
Fast from words that hurt; Feast on words that heal.
Fast from anger; Feast on patience.
Fast from discontent; Feast on thanksgiving.
Fast from gossip; Feast on the courage to go to the source for more accurate understanding.
Fast from discouragement; Feast on hope.
Fast from bitterness; Feast on forgiveness.
Fast from suspicion; Feast on truth.
Fast from fear; Feast on love for stangers.
Fast from judging others; Feast on the Christ within them.
Fast from focus on differences; Feast on the love that unites us all.

(Gentle God, during this season of fasting and feasting, gift us with your presence so we can be a gift to others in carrying out your work.  Amen.)

Here's my line:  Fast from talking; Feast on listening.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Those Wild and Wacky Wise Guys
are Lovin' their Mardi Gras Celebration!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Micro-Mini Me's

Yesterday was the last Sunday in the season of Epiphany and I surprised the Wise Men with a gift.  They were dumbstruck as they are so used to being the givers of gifts.  They just aren't accustomed to receiving presents.  They stared at the tiny box for hours.  After several trips into the guest bathroom to see what they were doing I asked them if they were ever going to open their gift.  They reminded me of their immovable arm predicament and I apologized for not recalling their inability to use their hands (they are quite sensitive about this) and I placed the tiny wisemen in front of them.  Silence ensued. 

Me:  Don't you like them?
#1:  Um...What are they?
Me:  Why, they are small replicas of you!
#2:  We see that & it's rather creepy.
#1: What will they do here?
Me:  Well, they can keep you company.
#3:  Are you replacing us?
Me:  No!  I would never do that!  I thought you'd like them!
#2:  So they are like Mini-Me's?
Me:  Well, they're actually more like Micro-Mini-Me's!
#1:  Can you put them back in the box please?
Me:  You don't like them?
#3:  Oh, they're lovely but we feel badly for them.
Me:  why?
#1:  Well we might not be able to move our hands but these poor fellas
can't even stand on their own two feet. 
At least in the box they will be upright!
Me:  oh...I didn't realize.....
#2:  Not to worry - they will become our pupils here on the windowsill.
#1: We thank you for your kindness.  We will take good care of them.

And with that I left the wise men with their gift of more wise men.
It makes you wonder how much wisdom one small bathroom can contain?

Sunday, February 14, 2010


"only when you don't know
what you're looking for,
can you be open to the
answers that can
change your life."

byron katie

photo of binocular building in
venice, california

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Hope in Haiti

Another survivor story in Haiti was reported a few days ago as a 28 year old man, Evan Muncie, was pulled out of the rubble alive.  I've noticed that the media's interest is beginning to fade but for the Haitians the tragedy is still unfolding,  so as a reminder to myself and others I'm reposting the prayer Josh Thomas wrote for his Daily Office website.  Josh contacted me with his revisions to his prayer and they are indeed beautiful:

O Father of the poor and Mother of the oppressed: Enfold in your arms the suffering people of Haiti. Comfort those in mourning; relieve those in pain; give shelter to the homeless and hope to those in despair. Feed your people, O God, with bread both earthly and divine, and give them your water and wine. Help them bury the dead, nurse the sick and wounded, and raise their faith and dignity, for they are some of your dearest children. Silence those who falsely claim that Haiti is somehow accursed; proclaim the truth that this vibrant, creative nation still shines as a beacon of freedom throughout the Americas. And help the people of Haiti, with the nations of the world and the people of means, to rebuild their colorful land in the image of your Son Jesus Christ, who knows our suffering because he took our mortal pain into his body on the Cross, then rose again to live and reign with you and the Holy Comforter. Amen.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Leap of Faith

If there is a fear of falling, the only safety consists in deliberately jumping.  - Carl Jung 

photo from here

I've been thinking about all those fears that are keeping me from taking my own leap.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Hope by Henri Nouwen

Hope means to keep living
amid desperation
and to keep humming
in the darkness.
Hoping is knowing that there is love,
it is trust in tomorrow
it is falling asleep
and waking again
when the sun rises.
In the midst of a gale at sea,
it is to discover land.
In the eyes of another
It is to see that he understands you.
As long as there is still hope
There will also be prayer.
And God will be holding you
in his hands.

Henri Nouwen - With Open Hands

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

be truly human

Your holiness shall consist of being truly human, not angelic. God has plenty of angels.  -The Kotzker Rebbe 1787-1859

This artwork "Too Many Angels" is by a very creative painter, Imelda Fagin. You can access her paintings here and here. I love the vivid colors she uses.