Learning to Dance

Explorations in the Spiritual Life

Month: April 2004 (page 3 of 6)

morning

I woke up with the wind. Branches danced in the early light of the sun, bright greens bouncing and shaking. I watched for a while this natural rhythm, feeling joy in it, feeling an odd sense of purpose. There is delight in watching cedar branches sway in a heavy wind, one which speaks to parts of my soul my intellect cannot capture.

The weight of last night still rests on me, however, as an unusual insomnia struck, leaving me awake and not wanting to be there, until almost dawn. I struggle to understand its nuances, not knowing if it is acedia or a drive to new directions.

That is the task for the day, to be sure, a figuring out of what is going on, a re-analysis of my place and purpose. Tasks begun are likely needing to be restarted, other tasks need to be put aside, enlivening activities demand attention. I have been here six months now, and feel like I am only beginning to see. This troubles me.

So, I must pray and seek wisdom, counsel, direction. Asking for prayer, doing those things which may or may not be right trails. Wishing for peace, for rest, asking for freedom. I do a number of things which people get paid for, and find my work to be without practical reward. That is a burden. For I work, and still must justify myself to verses which say a person should not eat if they do not work. I weary of no confirmation, no progress, no answers, and no practical encouragement. Some people are kind in their words… my soul needs to find more than words.

There is only forward, as I have said, so that is the direction I will try and go today.

evening

A warm day with a cold breeze. Tonight it is cool with no breeze, a gentle night, quiet and full of peace.

I wonder what I am doing. This is a monastic style existence without the monastery, or commitment. Do I fast because of devotion, or for a lack of food. Do I wander because of my own lack, or is the hand of God really leading me. Where has my ambition gone? Is it turned a different direction, or turned off.

I felt a sudden drop of my soul during this last hour or so. I don’t know why, I don’t know what is going on. A great weight has descended. I don’t know the right response, other than prayer. Last year around this time I earnestly pursued going in a responsible direction. I took a leap out, and committed to it, praying that the only way I would not go farther would be if God physically prevented me. He did. That’s a different story, to be sure, though in many cases it was the beginning, or should I say the end. Before that marked a different part of me, one eager for progress, for acclimation, for purpose before the masses. My heart died in a way that day, and I’m not sure if I ever recovered. Essentially, that was the day I stopped caring. To live is Christ. I learned that more.Only it was not a matter of positive choice, but the last vestige of my own efforts in searching to go past God’s heavy hand.Now, I only wait on him. Tonight those feelings, that misery, that infernal emptiness returns. I look around, and feel the blank surroundings, that solitary life which I never really sought. With these thoughts I am aware of my connection with those who have gone before. I read of similar souls, much farther advanced than I am, in the stories of the desert fathers.I yearn to teach, to lead, to be productive.Yet I read:

A hermit said, ‘I would learn rather than teach.’ He also said, ‘Do not teach too early, or you will have less understanding during the rest of your life.

Why am I in a hurry? What race am I trying to finish. There is no reward for being first, only in lasting to the end. Jesus was around thirty when his ministry started, before that he got angry when anyone suggested he act his part. “It’s not my time,” he said. I’m a year away from starting where the Son of God incarnate began. I’m not ready either, only all the world tells me now or never.

Antony said, ‘He who sits alone and is quiet has escaped from three wars: hearing, speaking, seeing: but there is one thing against which he must continually fight: that is, his own heart.

This is true, we cover so much of our own hearts in the white noise of other pursuits, even, especially, Godly pursuits, so attuned are we to saving or teaching others, we lose ourselves, or never find ourselves.

Poemen said, “He who knows himself is a man.”

Who really knows themselves in our era? I have stopped in many ways, stuck in the wilderness, hoping this is not still the first darkness. The weight is heavy, and there are no voices around which speak of similar paths. Yes, there are many who seek God. Not in the silence, though, not in the quiet, not in the emptiness. Even in those most searching, the same ambition, though turned holy, presents itself. Where is the rest in this world? I feel the heavy weight, the exhaustion of swimming in a current which pulls me along, so that I can neither come nor go, only tread, seeking to keep my head afloat. And I know, I know at the core of my being that there is no way other than through all of this. The temptations present themselves, the green grass over yonder, that which others say I should do in order to justify myself to them, to prove that I am worthy in their eyes, or even worthy to fulfill my obligations once made. I could pursue, but I know in my depths that this would just hide the stronger call, delay the inevitable, cause further chaos. So, I duck my head, trying to find some refreshment, some rebirth in the water. Only tonight I feel nothing but the deafening silence, and the pain in knowing it is right. I seek solace in company, in potential pursued, in money made for the continued work I do. These are not where my solace is to be found. My soul is not wide enough, strong enough to yet embrace that true source of solitude. We are called to see that which Moses could not, to take in the fullness of God through the God in us. The Spirit whispers, persistent. In the silence, in the quiet, we hear the voice, and can no longer turn away. I either will find death or life in my present pursuit. There is no retreat.The thought weighs me down right now, even as writing these words buoys me up.

I trust that my prayers are answered, that my life is a narrow path hedged by the very hands of God. I can do nothing else. Only time will say if these words are truth or deceptions. I can only do that which my heart inspires, for if I seek to walk with the Spirit, I cannot be the one trying to tell the Spirit where to go. That is my prayer, my hope, that the Spirit would lead, for I am willing to follow. I just feel the weight tonight, and it burdens my soul.

evening

Ah, the evening. Yes. Other tasks filled my evening, until midnight in fact. Helping others and whatnot. More on that to come. I suppose I could have written, it just didn’t fit in. The greats always discussed being willing to sacrifice a discipline for the sake of others, for it is the people who are loved by God, not the sacrifices or devotion. There is no greater discipline than learning to see the importance of a person like God does, and we show this when we are willing to help others with tasks or needs.

morning

What was all white yesterday morn is a again all green now. There is no indication of our little storm. The sun shine bright, and only the chill breeze speaks of the recent past. The cold air always is good for my rest, I sleep long and sound, too long. Jays screeching outside, many of them creating a ruckus, woke me up, and got me out of bed. Sometimes they screech for seed, sometimes a predator is nearby (ravens are the better indicator of this; be watchful when ravens swoop in a certain area, they follow the dogs and cats, eager for scraps), or for reasons my non-avian mind cannot perceive.

It is very quiet now, the uproar of last week has ended, the dead trees are gone from the neighborhood. I’m glad for it, and yet I don’t like having the excuse for not getting to my regular tasks. Between this and that, all coming after each other, it has been two weeks since I could settle down into a peaceful pattern. In the midst of this, though, I gained some excitement, some interest in fields I didn’t know I would ever consider. So, that is a light.I feel strong, however, the need to recover the main goal, to again grasp onto that which is the purpose, letting the secondary aspects excite but not overwhelm. Nature also calls strong, I think I shall spend time renewing my soul in its midst. Running most likely, through trails newly reopened.

For now, though, I’ll try and restore my flow, for that is my only path to peace at the moment. The road to Christ is narrow, and gets no wider once through the gate. It is a treacherous trail to God, many fall, many lose heart, basking in the fact that at least they can see the mountain. God calls for more, for us to walk to him. He gives us light and strength, hope and grace. We must walk continually. And there are many trails to God, once past the gate, only a few are paths we can walk, maybe only one. The very privileged can share their path with another, though this is not an indication of anything other than how things are. The greats walked a solitary path, as did Jesus. Who knows where my path will lead? My only thought must be on the goal, not on the present difficulties. It gets too long if we consider what is wrong. I’ve dwelled in those thoughts for years at a time, and now seek only to look ahead, to walk the trail as it presents itself, praying that it leads to a noble end. So, today, I take more steps, hopefully forward.

morning

I love waking up to white, seeing the snow upon piles of wood, a thin blanket over the hillside. It is not a deep snow, and a few hours of sun will melt it. For now, though it is a delight. The snow speaks of winter, a winter which did not deliver as it should, our precipitation many inches below normal. Yet here it is again, still reaching out, telling us that Spring is not yet here, Summer is not yet near. Spring does reveal itself in the sounds of the birds, the activity and songs of chickadees in distant trees, the strident calls of steller’s jays landing on the balcony. The world is bright now, even in the dull dawning light, dark forest greens and vibrant snowy white mingle together, an intricate pattern of great beauty and infinite complexity. Why does it dazzle and soothe? Because it taps into senses deeper than we know, that awareness which inspires art, which allowed humanity to survive when comfort was not an expected right. I am entranced, for I know and do not know how much what I see speaks in a language my very soul cries out to hear at all times. The language, the touch, the majesty of the creator.

All is not full of peace in the outside world, even nearby. I think of the baby birds cold in their nest, the parents having to both feed and warm them in this deep chill. God, we are told in Scripture itself, watches over these birds, over the trees, over all the world, coming not to save just sinful humanity but to indeed save all the world from the insidious influences which corrupt. So, I should not worry. The salvation of the whole world is beyond my ken and strength. There is only to do my part, that which I’ve been called to do at this moment in space and time. More than a cog, to be sure, though not that much more. It is a restful thought. All I have to do is that which is laid before me today, just those things which are included in my calling. I do not live to prove my worth, to show God or man how much I deserve fruit and love. I am loved already by the Creator of all I see, who watches over the birds in their nests, and over me as I sit. It is just my task to become, to attune myself increasingly to the ways of God in and outside of Time, so that when the call comes for action I will be ready.

It was a cold night, a three blanket night, and I slept well, renewed for the tasks of the day. The frustrations reveal again my delight in writing, my focus restored by just those few words I added here last night. Writing, I find, is not an onerous task, rather it renews my soul like little else does. Watching a sunset, staring at stars, feeling the grooves and rough texture of an old cedar, listening to the sounds of songbirds singing with morning cheer, and writing. For what reason, I do not know.

That is the only drawback. There lies in my heart a need for justification, not before God, but before people. Revealed in praise, and something that pays. I delve deep into my soul and find this is my lack, my only pause in embracing the fullness of the present. I do not know whether this spurs me on or holds me back. It is right and not right all at the same time.

In this moment, staring out at a windsock lifted in the cold air, a small celtic symbol of the Trinity made in green stained glass twisting, a small icicle hanging off, the cut and uncut logs draped in a white sheet, green needles drooping with weight and bursting with life, all that which is just before me without moving from where I wake, I feel a measure of peace and content. All the world may drift away, but if I keep my eyes on the One who calls, who creates, whose artistic mastery I see outside, all will be well, whether in death or life.

That is the call of beauty and truth on my heart, why I will forsake all in order to grasp these in the measure they are offered. Having taken hold of Christ, whenever this happens, will bring ease to everything else. Seeking after divergent goals will never bring peace, though satisfaction they might contain. A gentle reminder for me this morning, inspired by white on green, brown interspersed, dawning light and singing birds.

With a borrowed computer I sit in a different room, with a different view than usual. Thin clouds cover the sky, keeping the view from being to majestic, and only the near reaching branches of a large cedar are seen in the shadows. One light shines in the sky, Jupiter alone rides the arc. On the other side of the house, from my balcony, I see the Big Dipper, perfectly fitting between an oak and a cedar, framed in crossing branches.

The chill in the air remains, the snow on the ground does not. By one today it was all melted away, steam and drips constant throughout the morning.

Another day of mindless tasks, of reforming what was lost, attempting to discover how to replace that which is not recoverable. I much prefer to write or run, getting my body moving to sitting around. However, there are benefits, and maybe even future joy in what was done today.

We walk paths for reasons which are not always the real reasons God is wanting us to journey. They are the reasons which make us move, for God knows us better than we think. So, the games he seems to play are not games at all, just his way of taking who we are at one point and leading us to where we need to be. In doing this he sometimes lets us think as we want, the reasons not near as important as the destination.

So, at the end, or middle, or beginning, of all of this I won’t be surprised if the outcome is different than my initial goals. My only goal is Christ, hard as that may be, and whatever this leads into is where I desire to go. I hold onto nothing tightly anymore, even myself.

We want to have reasons for our faith, proof for our hope, endless bounty for our worship. Where is the honor in this? We forgive our enemies, turn the other cheek, pray when we cannot feel, trust when all is dark. That is the call. For we walk in a world much wider than what we see, and in acting as we are called, as though we do see, is drawing us into an eternal perspective which someday we will see.

How nice it will be to see as it all is, and to find one has been walking rightly. This isn’t an issue of salvation, more of duty and honor. To hear the words, ‘well done’.

I miss those things which I could grasp if only I was more practical and willing to waste myself. Those things will come, in time, and much more wonderfully if only I stay the course.

I am tired in mind and soul tonight, the efforts of the day not inspiring. Even in these God is with me, I know. At least I want to know this, and tell myself I know this. I wonder if asserting faith is the same as having it?

just the evening

My brain is fairly empty this evening. I finally seem to have approached some measure of possible success after only a day wasted trying. We’ll see.

Snow has been coming down all the day, all the trees are covered in white, a gentle whisper of falling flakes is heard. Such a surprise, such an unexpected delight. I am frustrated by tasks, and need only to look and listen to restore some peace. All is truly well. Light fog rolls past, in no hurry. A raven calls repeatedly. At this hour? Yes, though I’ve never heard one after dark. It is moving away, flying and searching.

All the limbs droop with the white weight. I am delighted because of the stress these trees sustained this past week, being battered and broken by needed surgery. They had taken care, but some were very hurt. I even spent a while bandaging their wounds, wrapping limbs together, covering the gashes with special paste. Yes, I am a tree hugger. To be honest, I would do the same for anything at this point. The trees are my only companions. Some will live– a fir which was sideswiped by an enormous falling trunk, losing half of its limbs on one side; a sapling cedar already as tall as me, though still young, with large wounds exposed. Another fir on this side of the house will also likely survive the damage, though was bent and broken in several spots. I worry about the oak in front. Split down the middle, the tiny trunk cut through. Buds were emerging on the branches, and so I had hope for it. Not now, but we will see, I did what I could.

So the snow is beautiful indeed, and it is also welcomed. For it is cold and wet, slowing down the possible damage, making the ground wet. The fog in the air as well gives moisture to the trees and plants which needed it so much even before the loggers came through. Now, it is a chance to slow down and recover, to be soothed by the weather, rather than assaulted by heat and disease and insect.

I needed this today, my frustration growing at tasks I little enjoy. Making do is always difficult, when our goals exceed our resources. Sometimes, on days like this, I see such irritations as a form of penance. Whether the irritations come from real punishment for misdeeds or not, I take such issues as just desserts. I know my sins, though few else do, and feel some measure of appropriate attack is proper, if not desired.

I also find that doing this is precisely what I need. What I sought to avoid last night is the very medicine my soul needs. I must look and see, noticing the bright greens of the trees, covered in a frosting of white. My windsock too is bright green and white (white enough to reflect the sun or other light), so it matches the world around perfectly. It however is fluttering wild in the wind, unlike the snow laden branches.

This matching is what I want as well, to feel in tune, to feel at rest, to feel the fitting as complementary colors might. Such a delight it is to look outside.

During my waiting for computer tasks to complete I pulled out a book of theology. Pannenberg was the choice, my favorite of the recent theologians. He makes me think so much, not just in what he says, also in how he inspires my mind to soar. Reading though is like exercise. What I could have taken in with some measure of ease a year ago, I now find taxing. I haven’t read formal theology for a long while, and though I love it, I can’t sustain it. So, there is only to continue trying.

Reading Gibbon before I go to sleep is an odd change from my normal fiction habits, and seems to fit the fact that my mind is again growing anxious for academic fare.

I weary of want, and I weary of work done without reward. It taps on my soul, though I realize the benefits as well. The most difficult part is knowing that people don’t understand, they don’t see in me what I see. Some do, and those I value.

This is why monasteries exist, I suppose, of any kind, whether religious types or art colonies. Like minded people are helped by being around others similar.

So, all these things mingle in my mind, hope and want coalesce with delight and joy.

Now, I shiver from the cold of the entering wind, my window letting in the cool air, and gentle scent. All is so very quiet on a snow filled day. Truly this was, if I as a Christian can say, a day of yin and yang. Opposing forces, teaching opposite truths.

I prefer the beauty and truth of the rolling fog and meditative scenes of waning Winter entering into Spring’s youth. It is much better for my soul, as just the last fifteen minutes shows so well.

evening

The clouds rolled in thick last night, filling the air with a wet chill. It was cold through the night, not enough for me to close my window, though certainly enough for me to grab an extra blanket. I always sleep well in cold weather.

Some various issues required me to take apart my computer last night, and do some things which lasted into the evening (no exciting Friday nights here in the mountains, I suppose). It was late, and almost with glee I realized I didn’t have to delve deeply and write. My computer was not working, so what could I do?

I could, of course, take pen and paper as I’ve done in the past and write out, then later copy, my thoughts. This idea didn’t occur to me until this morning. How eagerly we grasp on to excuses to avoid our discipline, how little it takes for us to give reasonable reasons to not do that which we are called to do. They seem so appropriate at the time, so fitting, so final. What could I have done? A rather lot, really, only I wanted to grasp onto a reason to just go to bed without either noticing the goings on inside or outside.

Alas.

My morning writing will come later, I’m trying to finish this last bit of computer stuff so that I can jump fully into a rhythm which I don’t want to interrupt. And yes, I know there is irony in this decision given my previous paragraphs.

morning

Cirrus clouds move by quick high above, thickening as they come, from wispy waves before to more blanketed sky. A cold wind rustles all, while the sound of continued cutting echoes from other hillsides. The jays came by for their morning visit, all other animals are gone for the time, but for a chipmunk rummaging through the fir saplings near where I sit. Squirrels are not around, it has been at least a few days since I saw one even from a distance. I play music on my headphones to block out the random noise of yelling and sawing.

I got to work early this morning, but did not write. That is my purpose right now, I know. Instead I got to the technical stuff of changing a look, and delving into codes and problems which do not excite or motivate me. That is fine, I am still building a ground work.

There are issues on my mind now, issues relating to my purpose and place. Only they are vague and rambling, so not worth writing quite yet. I do need prayer, I think, though not for anything wrong or negative. I am at a point where I am trying to get my bearing again. It happens every few months or so. A bit like hiking through the wilderness, occasionally stopping and looking at a compass, checking the map, looking at the world around, in order to make sure that one hasn’t gotten off path.

The technical stuff does not arouse, it deadens and distracts, annoys me in a way, though I appreciate being able to move farther forward because of these tasks. After a few hours now, however, I feel my mind and soul slipping from the heights. Rather than turning, though, I may forge forward, sacrificing this day so that others may better engage the wonderful life-giving rhythm and flow.

It is noisy out, and so not completely a day of peace. Might as well use it for what it is, I think.

I may add thoughts during the midday. Something more in keeping. There’s a lot of rattle inside, just my brain is diverted from the consideration.

evening

All the activity around has died down. The constant movement and sound which had filled the last two days finally subsided this afternoon, with all the dead trees now gone it is likely to stay this way for a while. Eleven trees, each of them large, were removed, and yet it does not seem empty around here. Those cutting the trees were very careful, very professional, leaving sapling underneath once tall trees able to forge their own way upward. The sky is more readily seen, the stars are bright tonight, though passing clouds earlier made me think the it would be covered. For some reason tonight I took delight in my adjusting eyes, walking out and first seeing only the brightest stars, then noticing more and more dots appear. A lovely quiet evening tonight, only the rustling of my windsock is heard.

Today was a nice day. A long hike through nearby paths, only recently opened again after six months of logging in the area. Off one of these paths was what I call my meditation rock. It is a small rock formation which sits above a long valley, the wind whips through, rustling the various trees. From certain spots the lake is seen perfectly clear. A nice spot for long hours of thought and prayer, and a fine place to watch the sun rise. I haven’t been there for a while, and now I know that while much, very much, has changed along those paths, this spot remains the same, with new green grass and small flowers filling the meadow on the way.

Every where else it was a war zone. Many pines were in this area, and now they were felled. The same consideration as seen near houses is not shown in the backwoods. It will take a long time to recover from the scars. This was a needed surgery, however, so I do not feel bad.

Spiritually I feel the same as I did this morning. Sloppy, restless, wanting more, not feeling more. Thoughts of desires unreachable at the moment fill my mind, and so I wallow in a small measure of discontent. Even now it is hard to write, hard to delve into depths filled with soft sand.

There is only to start again tomorrow. I also know that what we feel is not always the reality. Spirituality happens when we are focused and when we are not, for we do not know what is being waged against us. We only see ourselves running, but cannot see the slope hardly at all. So we slow, and are discouraged, not seeing how steep the incline we walk. That could be the case now, slogging through the shallows is as much part of the journey as reaching the top or delving through the deep valleys.

I am also praying about my own status, not sure how long to remain, or if I should. This present world calls, for all the usual reasons, and I want to answer. I doubt myself tonight, wondering if I was right in ever coming, wondering if some decision in the past didn’t go right. I wonder am I wandering through the wilderness, or am I in my forty years of wandering again. I don’t know. There is no wisdom I can find, so all I can do is try to do what is right at each point. All can change in a day. It would, though, be nice to know the lines, to know what it is I am fighting for, to see what I’m standing up for.

I think this is why obvious persecution has a certain amount of appeal. We feel the fight, see the stance, and can take hold of that which binds. The regular life, that which is no less a struggle in many ways, discourages because we don’t know we are fighting. We get lazy and discouraged, when we might be superheroes in an active setting. The Sherlock Holmes effect is a particularly spiritual problem, for most people I think. That’s why also Christians seek to force the stimulation through conferences or camps, short term missions or other means.

That reminds me of a thought I had earlier today. I know a number of people who travel the world, who have traipsed upon many continents. I haven’t as much, and while I enjoy traveling, I don’t have the same yearning for it. Maybe because I am learning different kinds of awareness. There is a kind which insists on stimulation, on change, on vast sweeping input in order to spark awareness. Then there is the other kind, the kind that sees without going, finding endless fascination in a single blade of grass, taking in the little nuances of everything around, understanding that even if I were to never move from this spot there would be a lifetime of study in what I see.

With the latter, the former still exists, for in seeing the intricate everywhere, travel to anywhere becomes a delight. When one needs the extra stimulation, then like a ruined palate, the subtleties are lost.

So too is the Spiritual life. Which is why the greats said all one needs to find God is found in one’s cell. A person must learn how to find God in the present, in the single room, or else God will never be really found anywhere.

Maybe this is why I struggle with Church. They want to impose schedules and programs, always asking me to spend money for another book, or camp, or seminar. I just want the simplicity, learning together in a bare room even. I want to see the intricacy of the Spirit in all things, to notice the nuances, as I notice the striations on a single blade of grass blowing in a light Spring breeze, or the way periwinkle flowers emerge from the leaves wrapped around a trunk, or how cedar bark feels and smells after a long rain, or any of the other aspects which are within the view of my balcony.

That is what I seek, only it takes time. Takes time to learn these, and it takes a long time to learn how to learn. This is why, I suppose, I remain in this room, with certain tasks keeping me busy, for the real task of delving deeply into what it means to be filled with the Spirit. It is training, and a kind of training which loses much with overstimulation, and requires nothing but quiet and solitude. God is found in this room, and when I find him here, I will find the essence of what it means to be a Christian anywhere.

Even if it takes a lifetime.

morning

A cool breeze blows, rustling branches, jingling distant wind chimes, filling the soul with ease. Jays chatter, in different voices, some even visit for a bit of breakfast. The balcony feels open, a change I think I appreciate. Trees still surround, just not as close. The sun has moved north faster than I expected, now quite in view of my present chair, though not yet, as it has not come above the hills.

I suspect today will be another busy day, another day in which the surrounding yards will be filled with those cleaning and fixing. Not quite as noisy as yesterday, to be sure. In fact a van comes up the driveway right now, even at this early hour.

So, again I will divert my attention away from my usual tasks, feeling now the weight of too long diversion.

This is, I’m well aware, also likely the source of my growing discontent. There is only grace for me if and when I am focused on writing, on other similar tasks. It has been a week since I could pour myself into that, and I feel my mind slipping away, my soul following, asking questions of my present status, wishing for more. Only when I focus, only when I do that which I know I am called to do am I filled with peace and rest.

It is right and good to take a break, to enjoy company of others, to celebrate holidays. Now, though, I feel like sloughing off all that constrains and distracts, and am eager to just sit in quiet again.

There is only grace in doing that which God has called one to do. We have learned to fight these feelings, though, explaining them away by our own weakness or needs, not trusting that God is whispering. When his whispers do not delight, or make sense, we ignore them, and can live entire lives wallowing in a vague discontent, always seeking, never finding, because we aren’t willing to go where God is leading.

That is part of why I am here. For some reason I knew a fair number of people, friends, who are five or more years older than I. One of whom has found some measure of calling, others who I see as stuck in a way. I saw them, and while they have a measure of real success, there is that gnawing which I do not want to feel anymore. That is why I’m willing to stop, to force my way through those feelings, spending focused months or years so that when I am ten years older I also will be ten years spiritually older.

Too many people yearn for Christ and yet never grasp a hold, always approaching never finding. I want to move past this point in my own life, and drop the ‘church should be…, but isn’t because…, and I should just do…’ comments. I will never find peace in church if I don’t find peace inside, with Christ, learning to know and understand my part in all of this.

So, this morning, I feel the yearning to focus again, to shake off the frustrations and move forward. If I stop now, divert my eyes to immediate satisfaction, I will never embrace that which is higher. It is a choice. Well, I’m not sure it is, God’s hand has held me in many ways, the choice is my attitude more than my opportunities.

Today, though, my day will not give much time for this focus. So, I pray that it is another kind of day, one which brings peace and joy, delight in friendship.

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