Tonight, there is a small space to breathe.
Two weeks of community life,
of learning and stretching and worshiping,
of eating together
and wondering together
and praying together.
Two weeks of being fed and nourished
and overwhelmed by grace.
Two weeks of moving through the days
to the sound of bells,
finding a rhythm of love and
answering an invitation
deeper recesses of the inner life.
Tonight, we moved away from the left side of our brains,
those cognitive parts of us that have been seriously stretched
with three to four lectures almost every day,
and we welcomed the Holy Spirit to speak to us
through the right side,
the imaginative, creative, symbolic side.
A Service of Reconciliation, they called it.
An invitation to any one (or all) of three stations,
all of them symbolizing our need
for deep healing,
for movement toward our whole selves
and the fullness of Grace.
A line of eight basins, each with a stack
of small white towels beside it.
Six sets of two chairs facing each other -
three in the front of the chapel for confession,
three in the rear for healing prayer.
Five of our group moved gracefully down the aisle
as this time of quiet began,
gently moving to the music provided
by our gifted leaders,
a song of hope and grace and forgiveness.
And then we sat in the candlelight and waited.
Waited for the Spirit to move us to one another and to God.
Two different women asked if they could wash my feet
and I humbly accepted.
Do you know what a deeply loving act this is?
The gentle touch of cleansing and comfort and presence,
of prayers and blessings offered over these
large and weary feet -
it is rare and wonderful to feel loved in such a way.
I am humbled.
I am grateful.
I am full to overflowing.
Because I don't know when I'm going to have another breather in the next few days, I'm going to post this small reflection at as many places as I can think of so that I don't fall through too many cracks after these last, very busy three weeks. Between our family wedding celebration, these two wonderful weeks of being stretched and filled while in training for spiritual direction, and leaving on vacation in 8 days, this is a crazy busy time. Very hard to adjust to after a quiet first six months of retirement!! So I'll sign on with these dear friends, as many of them as have their links still open, and apologize to each of them and to each of you for the overkill. I'll try not to do this too often!