20th September 2021 A Candle in the Window Peter Millar
- Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know! Prema Chodran
- The New Testament includes a hope-filled vision of the whole universe pervaded with divine promise. Elizabeth Johnson.
- Remember the great value of silence. Within each day there must be time for silence. There must be time within which we neither speak nor listen, but simply are. From the Benedictine tradition.
The joyful mind: (Words of wisdom from Richard Rohr)
I invite you to practice living daily with a joyful mind. What might a “joyful mind” be? Here are some suggestions:
When your mind does not need to be always right.
When you no longer need to compare yourself with others.
When your mind can be creative but without needing to tell others.
When you can live in contentment with whatever the moment offers.
When you follow the intelligent lead of your heart.
When your mind is curious and interested, not suspicious and interrogating.
When your mind does not brood over imagined injustices.
When your mind does not need the future to be better than today.
When your mind can accept yourself as you are, warts and all.
When your mind can wait, listen and learn.
When your mind can live satisfied without resolution or closure.
When you can find God in all things.
*A wonderful book – English Pastoral: An Inheritance by James Rebanks, Penguin Books, UK 2021. ISBN 978-0-141-98257-1 “One of the most important books of our time”. (Words from one reviewer) Personally, I hope you can get a copy, and then pass it on! Information about the book on the web.
Always we begin again:
Recently I spent some time in hospital and I took with me one of my favourite books which I have had for many years. The book’s title is “Always We Begin Again” and the author, John McQuiston, is an American who worked as an attorney-at-law. John’s desire for a more profound connection with the spiritual life led him to study the Benedictines. Written in the 6th century, the original Rule of St Benedict emphasized discipline and routine and caused a revolution in monastic life. John has adapted the Rule for daily living in today’s world, using language that would not exclude followers of any faith. I feel it is a book which speaks to many who are seekers – exploring what a meaningful spirituality may look like within their lives.
Here is a short Mid-day Meditation from the book: if possible, read it slowly.
We give thanks for our existence……..we recognise that we rely on forces beyond our understanding…….we trust what this life brings………we trust ourselves, we trust our friends….we trust our families…..we trust life……we trust the universe……we release our past to the past…..we release our future to the future…… we accept our present. ……….we give up our cares and fears.
We abandon our illusions of control……..we acknowledge our complete dependence on providence…….we relinquish our apprehension…….we rely on that which we do not always understand.
We have faith…….we have courage.
Keep us from all fear today…….open our hearts to the gift of this moment…….and bind us to the great unknown through complete trust.
Assist us in forming a loving image of the ultimate mystery……. …………………………to have faith, and the courage to give ourselves hope.
The whole and every grain of sand:
Lord, may I love all Thy creation, the whole and every grain of sand in it. May I love every leaf, every ray of Thy light. May I love the animals: Thou has given them the rudiments of joy and thought untroubled. Let me not trouble them, let me not harass them, let me not deprive them of their happiness, let me not work against Thine intent. For I acknowledge unto Thee that all is flowing and blending, and that to withhold any measure of love from anything in Thy universe is to withhold that same measure from Thee. Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881)
*** You will go out with joy and be led forth in peace, the mountains and hills before you will burst into song, all the trees of the field will clap their hands. Isaiah chapter 55.
*** Creator of winter’s beauty, spring’s promise, summer’s energy and autumn’s surprise, lead us through the seasons of nature and of life with a rediscovered tenderness and wisdom that we may cherish the preciousness and mystery of the good earth each new day. pm
*** As we think of the task facing all those who are engaged in the great task of healing our planet we can remember some words of the writer Christina Rossetti…….”Does the road wind uphill all the way? Yes, to the very end. Will the journey take the whole long day? From morn to night, my friend.”
*** O Christ, there is no life in the sea, there is no creature in the ocean, there is nothing in the heavens, but proclaims your goodness. There is no bird on the wing, there is no star in the sky, there is nothing beneath the sun but proclaims your goodness. From one of the Iona Community’s Worship books.
Bless to us, O God
The moon that that is above us,
The earth that is beneath us,
The friends who are around us,
Your image deep within us,
The day which is before us.
A well-known Celtic Blessing
Connecting with each other:
During the long months of Covid 19, A Candle in the Window has linked many people in different parts of the world. We may not know one another in the traditional way of friendship, yet it is inspiring to know that in a beautiful way our hearts and hopes for our world are linked within a web of caring and of awareness. I know that each one of us, in our own way, is being a “witness to hope” for many others. (PS If your e-mail address has changed recently perhaps you could let me know. Thank you, and take care wherever you are in the world at this time.) Peter.