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, November 14, 2021


But I’m so bored with myself

Yeah, I’m so bored with myself

My body doesn’t work

I can’t catch up

And I’m all messed up…

                     Joy Deyo, Sweet Nobody, Five Star Diary



There are days I hardly seem worth the effort.

No, I do not live in the wilderness of low self-esteem,

although I have had my moments.


It is just that sometimes I look in the mirror and think, “Really?!”

After all this time, all this life experience, all the study I have done,

all the effort, after everything,

I’m no further along as a human creature?


I mean seriously!

At 70 you would think I would be wiser,

calmer, less impulsive,

less enslaved to all those old patterns that I have carried with me through life.


Why do I still impulsively eat an entire bag of potato chips?

Why do I still struggle with the haunting belief that no matter what I do, it is not good enough?

Why do I still talk too much and listen too little?

Why am I still so self-centered?

Why do I still get so angry?

Why am I so opinionated (and outspoken).


There are times when I am just flat bored with this old self

that seems to hang around, and simply can’t follow all my brilliant instructions.


So I look in the mirror and think,

“My body doesn’t work

I can’t catch up

And I’m all messed up…

I’m so bored (or is that disappointed) in myself”


Of course the truth is I am simply normal.

As Brian McLaren notes (We Make The Road by Walking)

“we are all on a wilderness journey out of some form of slavery.”


Or as Paul notes, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” (Dang!  I hate it when he’s right!)


It is difficult to leave our old patterns behind.

Ask the people of Israel, who wanted to go back to Egypt, back into slavery,

rather than deal with their new reality.


Ask anyone who struggles with anxiety, or fear, or prejudice.

Ask anyone who struggles with addiction.

Ask anyone!  Literally, anyone! (Except maybe a narcissist)


This of course is where the Sacred comes in.

That Sacred Presence that is woven into every molecule of this planet.

Into every bird, fish, animal, and person.

Into you and me.


The people of Israel did not wander through the wilderness alone.

Sacred was with them.  Leading (pillar of fire and cloud).  Teaching (10 commandments),

Just being present (Tenting).


They screwed up anyway.

But they made it, all the way to the promised land.

They were able to keep moving, one foot in front of the other.

Left foot, right foot, left foot, breathe (or pray).


We do not wander out of our slavery alone.

Sacred is present every step of the way.

We may stagger.

We may wander.

We may at times get stuck.

We may want to go back.

We may in fact go back and need to start over.

We may whine “aren’t’ we there yet?”


But the journey is real.

And as we open to the presence, Love will lead us,

step by step, forward to the promise.

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