As an adult visiting my parents in my childhood home, there are things which I can be sure will remain constant despite the passage of the time and the changing of seasons. One of these is a warm welcome in the form of a hot meal, anytime day or night, and another is a walk in the local woods with our beloved dog and ruler of the household, Potchi.
I laughed once at my mother, a hospital chaplain, for ‘re-imagining’ Psalm 23 by casting our dog as the shepherd and these very woods as the backdrop for life’s journey; our dog being the one who forces my parents daily – whatever the weather and the inconvenience – into these woods for a window of rest, of breathing and of slowing down.
But this week, I have begun to understand what my mother means. As I walked Potchi towards the woods for the third time in as many days, I felt apologetic towards him for bringing him to the same place yet again. As I don’t have a car, I don’t have the means of taking him somewhere more imaginative. So these woods will have to do… but he must be so bored, I thought. Continue reading
Vulnerability. Risk taking. Bravery. These words I have held close to my heart, readily dished out as I talked with friends . How I have tried, oh I have tried, to be intentional about living more deeply into these things. Being more of these things.
Fast forward to early evening in Paris. Weak light filters through the windows. We lie eyes closed, stealing glances every few minutes. We’re of course staring at each other through these half-closed eyes until we both catch eyes at the same time and are forced to acknowledge the silence. Continue reading
So much has happened lately that I feel I’ve dived underwater and am waiting now to resurface. Trouble is, I seem to have grown accustomed to life below – a nagging sense that I’m growing webbed feet.
And the whole time there has been silence on here. I’ve scribbled words, thoughts and observations down in my battered black notebook that have followed me around.
But I never felt brave enough – or able – to join the dots and tell the different stories. And I feel poorer for it.
How You let your side be ripped open that our lives need never be split into sacred and secular.
How you were slashed that our lives could be seamless — all holy.
I see you.
Your curve of your mouth, the light in your eyes – and the grey
The restlessness of your feet
The ache of longing in your heart rendered by
That place where joy unspeakable meets not yet. Already.
But not yet.
Taste! And see that I am good.
Touch this here, taste this sweet honey, listen to my voice – weighed deep and still.
Count each blessing, inscribe on your heart and with each carve the yawning gap of not yet is imbued with the hue of the already. There is a now to this moment. Touch it! Taste!
And watch as I breathe on your eyes and cobwebs fall. I will show you a third heaven and you will know it is Me.
I will put a new song in your mouth – ‘Come and see!’, and they will come for it is I, and I, and I and I simply am.
But stay a while. For this place is just for you and I too. So stay a while.
I see your smile, your restless feet, your aching heart. Don’ think it escaped my n0tice – I will tell you in a crowded room through the touch of a hand unfamiliar.
And here is enough. Take this with you, friend.