Advent, despite all earnestness, is a time of refuge because it has received a message. Oh, if people know nothing about the message and the promises any more, if they only experience the four walls and the prison windows of their gray days, and no longer perceive the quiet footsteps of the announcing angels, if the angels’ murmured word does not simultaneously shake us to the depths and lift up our souls–then it is over for us. Then we are living wasted time, and we are dead, long before they do anything to us. ~ Father Alfred Delp, Source: Advent of the Heart
The world is holy. We are holy. All life is holy. Daily prayers are delivered on the lips of breaking waves, the whisperings of grasses, the shimmering of leaves. ~ Terry Tempest Williams, from Talking to God: Portrait of a World at Prayer (anthology)
Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circles of nature, is a help. Gardening is an instrument of grace. The garden door is always open to the holy. ~ May Sarton, Source: Gardening by Heart
…All this is God,
right here in my pea-green house
and I mean,
though often forget,
to give thanks
to faint down by the kitchen table
in a prayer of rejoicing
as the holy birds at the kitchen window
peck into their marriage of seeds…
~ Source: “Welcome Morning” by Anne Sexton, Dancing With Joy edited by Roger Housden
To bless a thing is to remind ourselves that the very object is one of God’s gifts given to bring us to wholeness of life. Once we understand that, we also realize it is the way we respond to things that makes us holy. Then nothing is for nothing in our lives. ~ Joan Chittister
Let my small story
connect to your larger one.
May we breathe with one breath.
May we make the day holy together.
~ Nita Penfold, Pocket Prayers, collected by June Cotner
I think over again my small adventures, my fears, those small ones that seemed so big, all those vital things I had to get and to reach, and yet there is only one great thing: to live and see the great day that dawns, and the light that fills the world. ~ Old Innuit Song
1. LIVE life at high speed. No exceptions. Run hard.
2. STAY scattered and distracted. The more clutter and activity, the better.
3. TAKE everything personally. Never evaluate. Agree.
4. USE blame liberally. It’s so invigorating. I wasn’t responsible, you were. Everything’s your fault.
5. DON’T laugh, especially at yourself.
6. STAY tied to your past. Elevate it to greatness. Live remembering and longing. Or missing. Why do it halfway? Go for it.
7. USE the word ‘because.’ ‘I can’t change, because.’ Because is so little appreciated as a solvent for responsibility. Try using because. This will work.
8. NEVER question or think for yourself. Just keep moving and accepting. (Refer to #1 and #3.)
9. CONTINUE to think of God as invisible and distant. Surely not present in this room. At this moment. Not while I’m reading a book.
10. REINFORCE the belief that your life is going to happen soon. This is not it, not yet. But one day. Maybe when I finish reading.
~ from: Sacred Threshold: Crossing the Inner Barrier to a Deeper Love, by Paula D’Arcy