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

Sunday, January 10, 2021

become a blessing

… the most profound blessings we will ever know are those that meet us in the place of our deepest loss and inspire us to choose to live again.  The secret of this blessing… is that it is written on the back of what binds you…  the stuff of pain, grief, and death becomes the very substance of hope.

                     Jan Richardson, Circle of Grace



we all have those moments

when life is difficult


when we think everything is coming to an end

that there will be no recovery

not this time


I remember the news of my father’s cancer

and I remember when he died

I remember too my mother’s diagnoses of bulbar palsy

And her slow debilitating decline into death


I remember the moment, when after years of

climbing the ladder of success

my world, through every fault of my own

crashed in around me


and the moment when I knew it was time to

let go of the leadership of a program I had run for 13 years


Moments great, moments small

moments like now

when I am simply tired, and when

whatever acts I can do, whatever words I can speak

feel like “not enough”

to ease an encroaching darkness


these endings are like a death


and yet it is one of the paradoxes of life

that these deaths

in the divine paradigm,

are the places where we most profoundly encounter the Sacred

and rediscover life


it is when there is nothing left

when we are stripped bare

and the structures of our lives have crumbled

and we stand (metaphorically) naked and alone


that we are met by love, and hope

and purpose


death in the divine pattern leads to resurrection

curse leads to blessing


as Cohen so powerful puts it in his anthem

“Ring the bells that still can ring

Forget your perfect offering

There is a crack, a crack in everything

That’s how the light gets in.”


As I enter this new year, I am seeking blessing


the curses are evident

the cracks are everywhere

the pain is real


but I want to ring the bells that still can ring

I want to find the blessings


Which means I have to look for them

Sometimes almost hidden, riding on my pain, and fear


So I can then live them

So I can live into hope, and rise out of the ashes into

Whatever new thing

The Sacred will create


So that I can not only find blessing

But offer blessing

And become a blessing


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