Primitive religion is not believed, it is danced!

Arthur Darby Nock

Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
And only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.

Elizabeth Browning

Thursday, December 31, 2015

God Keeps Reaching Down

"God simply keeps reaching down into the dirt of humanity and resurrecting us from the graves we dig for ourselves through our violence, our lies, our selfishness, our arrogance, and our addictions. And God keeps loving us back to life over and over.”
― Nadia Bolz-Weber, Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith of a Sinner & Saint

another year ends
it was kind of a dirty year

I can think of no other way to think about it
as we wallowed in the mud and filth of

ugly politics
ongoing wars
more shootings
more radical ideology, crushing compassion and common sense

and as I stumbled through
another year of
errors and failures
all my precious own

it was another year of slowly
sinking into the dirt

it is a good thing
God does not mind getting the Sacred hands dirty

For God reaches down into the dirt
And again and again
(and again)

to lift me up
lift you up

and love us back to life again

happy new year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Wake Up!

Do you have a body?  Don’t sit on the porch!
Go out and walk in the rain!
If you are in love, then why are you asleep?
Wake up, wake up!
You have slept millions and millions of years
Why not wake up this morning?
              David Steindle-Rast, quoted by Barbara Brown Taylor, Altar in the World

what does it mean
to be spiritual?

to respond to the Sacred

what does it mean to let Sacred
roll through one’s soul
setting one on fire
with Holy Passion?

somehow we have decided
that being spiritual
being tangled up with Sacred Presence

is about rituals
and profound tomes
theological assertions
and prayer

those activities have their place
(I suppose)
although I suspect they may be more effective
at putting our souls to sleep

a sad thing
when what we really need to do
“wake up”!

our spiritual lives
are about feet that move
hands that help
hearts that sing

it is more about
walks in the rain than about sleeping in the pew,
and laughter and love,
than pious prayers
bouncing around a half empty sanctuary

Our faith should wake us up
grab our senses
titillate us
enliven us
make us tingle

When your times with Sacred
make you feel like you just fell in love?

That’s spirituality

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

To Live is to pray

“Prayer, according to Brother David, is waking up to the presence of God no matter where I am or what I am doing. When I am fully alert to whatever or whoever is right in front of me; when I am electrically aware of the tremendous gift of being alive; when I am able to give myself wholly to the moment I am in, then I am in prayer
                                                                        Barbara Brown Taylor, An Altar in the World

to live is to pray
not merely to live,
as one going through the motions, without hope
or purpose

but to really live

to really live
so awake
to the sacred around us
and in us

to be so aware
of the what is happening
to those
placed in our path

the pain and fear
the anger and despair
the joy and the hope

so aware of the needs of the world
and the beauty of creation

that we cannot help but respond

joining our hearts
and souls (if there is such a thing)
with all around us,

scattering our hope and will wishes
our questions and our pleas
into the far reaches of the universe,
to Sacred, the heart of all creation

allowing our hearts burst into a Sacred song
of joy and amazement
supplication and hope.

that is prayer!