Showing posts from December, 2012

Peace, Rest, Gratitude....claiming it while I am able

Another quiet start to one of my final days of staycation. I have a small black cat snuggled on my lap between my belly and the laptop. Another cat is comfy under the Christmas tree, her favorite spot this time of year. Two old dogs are snoring nearby while the younger dogs gulped their breakfast, did their business outside and ran back upstairs for more sleep. Bach adagios are playing softly, adding to the calm of the morning. The sun is rising but it is a cloudy day so the light outside has a blue cast do it, the ground, trees, and houses, drenched in frozen snow, a waft of smoke rising from the chimney of a house across the street. I have a fire burning in the fire place, too. And a giant mug of steaming hot coffee with cream and honey. (Yes, I put honey in my coffee....raw, unfiltered, local honey - good for the immune system and allergies, too, they say).

Tonight, with little fan-fare my husband, son, and I will ring out 2012 and bring in the New Year. We'll have a meal (bee…

Thirteen Years of....Joy

Thirteen years ago, on December 28th I was ordained a transitional deacon in the Episcopal Church. (Six months later, on June 28th, to the priesthood). That year the feast of St. John the Evangelist was transferred to December 28, supplanting the usual feast day of Holy Innocents (the day honoring the children killed by Herod - according to scripture- in his vain attempt to rid the world of the Christ-child). I much preferred the idea of an ordination on the feast of St. John. It was however the end of the 20th century, one of the last days of 1999. We all wondered what was going to happen when 2000 rolled in a few nights later. Would computers stop working? Would the stock market crash? Would the apocalypse come?

Thirteen years is not a very long time to be ordained. In some ways it still feels so fresh and new. Just like in some ways I still feel twenty-something instead of nearly fifty-six. I think that's a good thing. I don't want my ministry to feel stale and old, tired a…

Friday Five: Recycle, Regift, Reflect

Deb, over at RevGals offers this Friday Five: As we take a breather from the busy weekend of Sunday/Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, it's time to reflect on the past year. It's hard to move out of this holiday season with its delights and celebrations. Here at our home, we've barely finished the eggnog. The tree is still up and our cats delight in knocking off the lower (unbreakable) ornaments. As we are rounding the final turn on the year 2012, I hope you'll play along with these questions. :) RECYCLE: 1. What is some "old news" this year that you'd like to repeat for 2013? - I lost a little weight and hope to continue to lose a little more. 2. What "new thing" have you started that you want to keep going in 2013? - I added more cardio to my exercise routine, having found a good number of options on YouTube. RE-GIFT: 3. What event, experience or gift would you just as soon "Return to Sender"? Maybe it was a disastrous sermon, a congr…

Quiet Christmas Day after....

The morning has dawned, late and dark as a winter storm approaches. The air feels heavy with anticipation. In this little region of metro Detroit, between Lake Erie and Lake Huron, storms coming from the west typically blow north or south of us. The storm heads straight for us until it gets to Ann Arbor, about 45 minutes west, and then they split and go around us. It's very odd. This storm however is blowing up from the south heading north east and we are due to get it full-on. We won't get the worst of it, that will happen south of us, in Ohio and elsewhere. But we are anticipated 4-6 inches of snow. That is enough to count as a snow storm. The measly dusting we got on Christmas Eve was beautiful, but it really wasn't anything to get excited about. 

Before the storm hits full on we hope to go to the Henry Ford Imax and see The Hobit. We wanted to do this yesterday but they were closed on Christmas. We could have seen it at another Imax, but we decided to wait, thinking t…

Bread of Life in Human Hands

 A reflection on the readings for Christmas wherein the story of the birth of Christ is told. The following prayer will open the candle-lit worship service at 11pm Christmas Eve:
When the world was dark
and the city was quiet,
you came.

You crept in beside us.

And no one knew.
Only the few
who dared to believe
that God might do something different.

Will you do the same this Christmas, Lord?

Will you come into the darkness of tonight/today's world;
not the friendly darkness
as when sleep rescues us from tiredness,
but the fearful darkness,
in which people have stopped believing
that war will end
or that food will come
or that a government will change
or that the Church cares?

Will you come into that darkness
and do something different
to save your people from death and despair?

Will you come into the quietness of this city/town,
not the friendly quietness
as when lovers hold hands,
but the fearful silence when
the phone has not rung,
the letter has not come,
the friendly voice n…

The Rhythm of Life Claims My Soul

Friday Five: Almost Christmas!

Jan, over at RevGals offers this Friday Five:
"... for this holiday Friday Five, let's have a free-for-all: Write 5 items about anything connected with Christmas, which of course includes Advent. Be personal, professional, spiritual or however you are feeling!" 1. I'm tired. It has been a very busy Advent Season. Flush and full and vibrant - and mostly good - except for the horrible tragedy in Newtown, Conn. (Which affected me deeply, as it did all of us). I'm tired and yet, there is more to do. My daughter arrives tomorrow. After church on Sunday we will have our family Christmas. Then my daughter leaves on Monday and I will lead worship for three services. By Tuesday at noon I'll be done. And ready for a week of rest.

2.  I have a funeral today, for a fine man who made his way to the church I serve just about a year ago. He was getting on in years and having memory loss issues - so instead of driving into Detroit to attend his church he came to ours, jus…

Fragile Trust

I grew up practicing drills in school. The alarm would sound and we would all scramble to the floor, hunch under our desks, knees bunched up, and our arms over our heads. Air raid drills for the next event of nuclear war fare.I grew up with the real potential for mass killing. Any day it was possible.

Nuclear testing took place not far from where I grew up, the winds blowing from the western desert region of Utah carried the residue of toxic, cancer causing, waste. The potential for a nuclear bomb was real to us.

Then the drill practices and that kind of thinking stopped. I don't remember when, how, or why. Maybe it's because I moved away from the west? When I was ten we moved to Wisconsin. When I was fourteen we moved to Texas. Then, when I was fifteen my family moved to Chicago, a city that became my home for forty years.

The first twenty-some years I lived in Chicago I took public transportation everywhere. I would ride buses and trains late at night and early in the morni…

O Come, into this Emmanuel Moment