Drifting


Drifting along waiting for this freaking virus to be annihilated. Will that ever happen? I don’t know about you but I feel so very drained by it all. I am just so tired – mentally, spiritually, and physically. And empty – so empty. Yet, I know in my deepest being that we are not forgotten. We are not alone. When my strength is gone, I know I can rely on the Divine One to carry me through; to lift me up and provide the hope and encouragement I need. When I feel lost and alone; when I feel like I cannot go on, from out of nowhere this flickering wick is re-lit and the flame leaps high. Sometimes that comes in the form of human hands. Sometimes it comes during a walk-in nature. Sometimes it comes through the loving attention of family members or friends. Sometimes it is as simple as sitting and stroking my cat’s fur. Yes, it always comes, that strength and peace I need. So, I will rest here and wait knowing that I will be given all I need for this day and the next and the next….

May you be given whatever it is you may need today. And may you recognize the blessing when it comes. Be well. Be safe.

On “Holy Insecurity”


“This is the kingdom of God, the kingdom of danger and of risk, of eternal beginning and eternal becoming, of opened spirit and of deep realization, the kingdom of holy insecurity.” – Martin Burber

If there is one thing that is true about this Coronavirus, it is in this quote from Martin Buber. When the world is shaken to its core and all seems dark and dismal. When sickness and death surround us. When we hit rock bottom. It is then and only then we begin to realize our powerlessness. It is then we are opened to throw ourselves on the mercy of a higher intelligence, a merciful divinity. It is then we begin to search the mystery of the Divine One. For surely these days are filled with “holy insecurity”.

A little over a year ago I was in Edmonton with my husband. He was so sick I was convinced he could die, and probably would die. It was a time of great stress, great insecurity, and many questions and doubts. Yet, against all odds he made it. He survived. My weak faith became strengthened through these days only to be tested once again as the Coronavirus plagued the world.  Fear ruled for a while. Anxiety reigned supreme. But then, out of the darkness faith was once again reborn.

I live in Canada, but news of the horror presently taking place in the United States and around the world has me very concerned. Yet in these times of great suffering, death, and loss of every kind a quiet, still voice reassures me: we are not alone.

 As I sit with the mystery that is God, I am comforted. The world has seen other great plagues and during those times surely people felt insecure, anxious, afraid. Surely it was an opportunity to turn again, to become, to learn and live and come to greater understanding, insight and wisdom. People ask where is this God? Where is this love and mercy? And I think to myself: it is in the kind ministrations of health staff. It is in the compassion and care of family members and friends. Sometimes it is in the kindnesses extended by strangers. It is in the patience and endurance of people who, perhaps, do not share our convictions, opinions, or faith traditions. It is in the trust of a child and the wisdom in the eyes of the old. And, it is in abundance in nature.

I sit here and I pray: May the Divine One bring us all we need. May we know the comfort of loving hearts and hands. May we know justice, kindness, patience, friendship, and help in all our needs. May we be granted the gifts of trust and perseverance. May we sit with this “holy insecurity” knowing we are held in infinitely tender hands by an intelligence that is far greater than our human understanding.

Amen.

This I ask of You, Divine One


Please, Divine One, sit with me as I wait

Grant me patience, grant me peace

Help me imagine the best possible outcome

Fill my being with hope; with trust

Please, take away all fear, anxiety, and stress

Bless my mind and let only good thoughts enter in

Bless my heart with kindness and love

That I may share these gifts with others

Grant me strength of mind, body, and spirit

To support myself and my dear ones

In every way

Guide my footsteps and be with me on my path

Bless these hands as they work for You and for all

This I ask of you, Divine One

I thank you for your constant care

I thank you for all those I hold dear

I thank you for this life I live

I thank, Divine One, for everything

To Love and Grow


Help me grow in love,

O Divine One, please

Let my soul open to you

Like leaves on the old oak tree

Though wrapped so tight inside their buds

With warmth and love from the sun

The leaves unfurl slowly,

Reaching out to that celestial star

That gives them life and growth

And so, Divine One,

I implore You now, help me open up

Let not my being stay locked inside,

To never love or grow

Help me now to unfurl myself

With Your most gracious aid

So that I may stand with outstretched arms

And palms that are open wide

To receive your blessings for this day

And grow forever more

Cape Spear, Newfoundland & Labrador


My sister shared this beautiful photo (not mine) taken by Gerald Lamb. I think it is so serene and beautiful I wanted to share it with all of you. Light houses for millennia kept sailors safe from rocky shores during the darkness of night and in foggy weather. At this time when so many of us are ‘lost in the dark’ so to speak I am reminded of the light shone by the Creator, if we have eyes to see. Be safe my friends and be well.

taken at Cape Spear in Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada photo credit: Gerald Lamb

“O God, Thy sea is so great

And my boat is so small” – author unknown

Nothing is insurmountable, or, bad news really does come in threes


Tough times do not last. I know this is true. I have experienced them time and time again. Still this whole corona virus thing seems like it has dug its feet in for the long haul. As businesses and organizations re-open across the country I keep waiting for that other shoe to drop. That second wave that sits like the monster in the closet I was so afraid of as a child. We’ve had a few, well actually three, pieces of news this week that make me wish I was a child again and could look to someone wiser than myself to deal with them.

 I wrote about Teather’s journey over the rainbow bridge yesterday. He belonged to my daughter-in-law and my son. He was such a sweet little dog and he will be missed so badly. That was one thing. Thing two: we learned that someone very near to our hearts and much loved may have been exposed to covid-19 just when we thought we were coming out of the woods where that dreaded, horrific disease is concerned. They will be tested on Monday and then we all await the results. I am confident it will come back negative, but still that small slim to none chance hangs over our heads like an axe about to fall.

Thirdly, we learned that my husband’s heart has suffered further deterioration. We are waiting for an appointment with a cardiologist in the big city. Our family doctor’s office said it could be a long wait due to circumstances around covid-19 and the long list of patients waiting to be seen. In the meanwhile, I may be called back to work soon. I work at the local library and have loved my job. Yet, the thought of working with the public in the midst of a pandemic is rather concerning, especially since my husband is at the top of the covid-19 list where vulnerable people are concerned.

I know I will be given the strength, wisdom, and fortitude to deal with it all from a Divinity whom I am so very grateful for. At this moment, as I write, however, I really want to tell the Creator, ‘enough already, enough!’  Yet somehow, some way, these tough times will pass, as others have passed. I just have to hang on and keep faith in the One who is all-wise and all-powerful.

Yes, animals do have souls


Callie-cat pressed against my leg enjoying a scratch

For centuries it has been debated whether or not pets have souls. I am an animal lover, always have been, always will be. Personally, I believe they do have souls (and humans are pretty arrogant to think that only we two-legged beings posses such a thing). I have a cat. You many or may not have seen some of my blog posts and photos of her. She is my comfort animal, often a source of great entertainment, and always my furry friend. Actually, she is more than a friend. She is family. I think most of us who are the parents of fur babies feel the same way. And, anyone who has been comforted and loved by any animal will likely agree that their love truly is unconditional. Much more so than human love with our biases, conditions, and selfish needs. So, how could you not believe animals possess something of the Divine?

 I truly do not understand people who do not really like animals. Yesterday I watched a dog and cat in the backyard. The cat had been shaved except for the head and yip of its tail. It’s a fairly new trend and I abhor it. No doubt its owner is trying to cut down on the amount of fur shed all over furniture and floors. See, to me, if you love animals you won’t mind putting up with the fur that seems to be everywhere. Callie-cat sheds a lot. At one point a woman I had rented an apartment from tried to convince me to have her shaved. You don’t want to know my response but it went something like, ‘when hell freezes over’ or ‘over my dead body’ or words to that effect. Honestly, I don’t remember what I said but I know it was a very emphatic ‘NO’. I love and respect her too much to ever submit her to that level of humiliation. I also don’t like cats and dogs dressed in those cute little outfits for much the same reason.

Cats and dogs, as well as other companion animals bring us so much love. In many ways they give us much more than we can ever hope to give them. Today is a sad day. My son and his wife had to take their little dog to the vet to make his final journey over the “rainbow bridge”. They are heart broken, even though they both know they have given him wonderful care his passing has left a huge hole that will take time to heal. Teather was a very sweet little dog with lots of personality, and more importantly lots of love he freely gave. He will be so missed. So, as I write this, I am seeing those large brown eyes gazing at each of us with pure love shining outward. Do animals have souls? I absolutely believe they do!

In loving memory of “Teather” – photo by his mama, Paula Hopkins

Rest from Life’s battles


Do not sit staring into the darkness overlong

Do not gaze into the abyss so long that you become embittered

Leave it now, take the hand of the Divine One and be led

Through deepest forests where the scent of pine is fresh and cool,

Along white beaches with the sand warm beneath your feet,

Climb to the mountain peaks and gaze in wonder at the earth below you,

Stand on rocky cliffs and allow the majesty of the sea to remind you,

Life is not all turmoil and drudgery; it is not meant to be so bleak and joyless

Do not let these dark days bind you, enslave you, consume you

Do not drown in the toxic waters of hate; of unforgiveness

Come, be filled with a new life of joy and well-being

Rest from your worries and the endless, wearisome, ongoing fight

Be nurtured, for the battle will rage on long after your life is spent

What will you choose today, for you have been given freedom of thought

Honor this life you’ve been given and look up, away from the darkness

Look upon the infant’s face or gaze into the eyes of the old ones, filled with wisdom

Hold the hands of your loved ones and know you have not been abandoned

Take this day and rest from your sorrows and the ongoing battle

Know the Divine One is here at your side to uphold you, to comfort you in your pain

Know you are never, ever alone, even through these dark and painful days,

And take leave of this great abyss to which you’ve been ensnared

Be joyful today and remember who you are, who you have been created to be:

A blessing, a benediction to a suffering world in travail and be, just be

For you are part of the beauty created and recreated today and every day

Be recreated today. Be reborn in love, in peace, in joy, in all that is good.

Come, now, look no further into the abyss. Look up, my dear ones, look up!

Looking through the magnifying glass and it’s not pretty


I have been kicking around this old world for a long time and seen changes that, unfortunately, are not good. I remember the focus placed on discerning one’s “calling” or vocation. I was raised Catholic, which will explain that, I guess. I have always worked with the public. It has been a joy and an honor to serve people in many capacities. I don’t feel it’s been a vocation per se, but I have enjoyed life, even with all its challenges and tribulations. Serving the public felt like I was leading a life of meaning, in ways that have fed my spirituality and nourished my soul. It feels good to help others. If I make someone’s day a little bit easier in any way that is a wonderful thing and by and large I have found people to be good, decent, and absolutely wonderful.

But reading news of racial strife, of the systemic murder of people of color; of poor leadership in governments around the world (if you can even call it leadership) makes me shudder. There is so much pain, so much injustice, and this pandemic is acting like a huge magnifying glass forcing us to see that which we would prefer not to see. Ignorance may be bliss for the privileged and the powerful, but for the victims of poverty and want it is not bliss but a horrific and painful reality. And it makes me wonder if the idea of service, of the golden rule, has been plunged into the whirlpool of dark eddies that seem to have enveloped our world.

In these times of terrific upheaval, of economic uncertainty, of a future shrouded in fear of the unknown, it can be so easy to throw in the towel. It is tempting to turn one’s back and fall into the temptation of self preservation. But the lessons I learned in childhood, the experiences I have had, all have kept me rooted in the idea that service is an honor and helping one another is a blessing and a deep, deep joy. I hasten to add service does not equal bending one’s neck to be stepped upon, nor does it mean having to live life like some kind of joyless martyr. No, not at all! I will not be swayed by the evil behaviors of the few. I will not bend to fear or abuse of power. I will stand with the one who is indeed powerful by whatever name you may attach to a higher power. I will stand with those who have always been chained in poverty and injustice. And if I can do anything at all to help break those chains I will!

Cravings


Craving

Craving peace and serenity

Craving joy

Craving answers and more

Craving most of all

Your divine presence, Creator of all

In these days of constant confusion

Of upheaval, illness, and the death of so many

Of a future shadowed and murky

“Days of wine and roses” so misspent

And misguided

Forgive our addiction to the temporal

To pleasures that cannot and will not ever last

Fill us now with your peace

Cool our cravings for that which never satisfy

That vanish like mists in the hot sun

Let us be filled with the peace only you can give

Bless us now with the sweet serenity

We can only know with you

And let our worries blow away

Like dandelion seeds on the wind

This I ask of you

Divine One