Tag Archives: Be Still

PALM SUNDAY

Standard

 

I listen to the birds singing on this beautiful, sunny spring day. As I breathe deeply, my lungs fill with the freshness of the fragrant, crisp air. All seems well in this little corner of my world.  But it’s not. On this Palm Sunday, one of the holiest days of the year, we are cloistered in our homes. People are fighting for their lives and struggling to take a breath – something we take for granted.

On this holy day in the past I have gone to church and somewhat dreaded standing through the long Sunday gospel.  It usually took only about 15 or so minutes as the priest and deacons took turns reading the different passages, but it seemed like an eternity. As a child, it was tiring and boring to stand for that length of time. It felt torturous. As I got older it seemed like a chore you had to endure once a year. Through the years I have come to terms with this day and the reading of these familiar words. Today, especially, I wish I could be in my church and hearing this important recounting of my faith. But I can’t – no one can.

This year life as we know it has changed. Covid-19 has taken us down to our knees as people get sick and die while overwhelmed healthcare workers struggle to care for the gravely ill. We are all scared and puzzled by what has happened to our world. And this week will be overwhelmingly even more frightful in our corner of the country as we reach the so-called apex of this invisible killer.  This year we are not bored. We are anxious. Our Military is stepping in to assist and maintain some semblance of order in our country. Schools are closed. Businesses are closed. Churches are closed. People are unemployed and broke and hungry and searching for faith in the midst of this pandemic.

This week, when we need it the most, Holy Week will not be celebrated in the way we are used to. On this day, Palm Sunday, I wish I could go to church.  I wish I could stand during the long, extended gospel reading and would do it without complaint and without tiring. The tradition of my faith has become so much more important in the grand scheme of things. This day I question how idiotic it was for me to ever tire of listening to the words of this most important gospel. It seems like such an inane thing to dwell on in such a horrific time. But it is especially in times of trouble that your faith becomes even more precious. It’s the thing you hold close to your heart in times of struggle.

So, I will read this passage at home alone as I practice social distancing and offer it up for our world as we now know it. I’m asking for God’s strength and care for all of us in the uncertain days ahead.

Hold on tight to your faith, practice gratitude, be still and breathe.

 

Be Still

Standard

It’s 5 am, and I lay awake in the darkness not quite wanting to start the day and not quite tired enough to sleep any longer.  So I savor the stillness, and I think.  Not all good thoughts; not all bad thoughts.  Just things that randomly drift through my mind.  Things I really can’t control. Sometimes anxiety and stress can sometimes take over. I should stop fretting and worrying.  I try to refocus on things that bring a smile. Things that fill my heart with gratitude. There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason or control in those wee small hours of the morning.

Life isn’t always smooth. Things usually don’t go the way you had planned or dreamed about. Maybe for some but not for most. Some are left to wonder why and trust in a plan that really hasn’t been defined as yet. And it’s OK because there is a lot of goodness and blessings that make your heart happy and satisfied if you can only envision them and realize what they are. There are moments of sheer satisfaction and contentedness and even joy. These are the things I have been focusing on.

In this time of Thanksgiving, it’s so important to be grateful for and to count the good things. To think about the graces and try to put the other stuff on the back burner.  You don’t have to resolve everything or have a plan of action.  Sometimes you just have to trust and give in and away that stuff that bothers you and know that it will all get taken care of and eventually figured out in the light of the days ahead.

The daylight is starting to dawn through the darkness. It’s getting brighter, and I can hear the peeping of the morning birds. I am filled with hope that all will be well. It’s a good place to arise and start the day.

dawn