Cluttered…

Have you felt that cluttered?  I don’t mean your house or car or desk, I mean your inner self. You become involved and busy and then all of a sudden – you can’t move around in your own skin.

While I was in seminary, I came across a book – The Mist-Filled Path: Celtic Wisdom for Exiles, Wanderers, and Seekers by M.A. Frank MacEowen and Tom Cowan.  I have been fascinated by mysticism and found this an interesting read. It had exercises for various spiritual practices and one in particular came to be a good tool for me.  It was a practice of letting go all the gunk that we allow into our lives. I transformed it using prayers from Book of Common Prayer and my own spoken prayers.  It became a weekly ritual while I did a clinical practicum at the hospital I was assigned.  I took in so much emotional stuff from those I visited and had nowhere to put it. 

I am feeling that again. But fortunately it is not overwhelming.  I also feel the need to just go and “be” somewhere, away from what is expected of me and what I NEED to do, like work to pay bills.  It is always an energizer for me. So when I finish a couple of things coming up I am going to find that day or two to just be and remember who my God is.  He has been sitting around waiting on me. Peace!

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Burnishing

I am taking a pottery class. I have already used a wheel and did a couple of really good pieces last spring.  But because I am in an “official” class at the comunity college, I have to start with handwork: coiling. Which is really cool but takes a little longer.  I finished a bowl and last week my instuctor told me about burnishing: take a smooth instrument(like a spoon) and rub on the outside unti it shines. Can use water or veggie oil to help in the process. I thought cool! So that is what I did today… the entire class time… for 2/3 of the class or two hours. YES! For two hours I rub on this bowl with my spoon. And yes my hand got tired and I had to take a couple of breaks. But it was so worth it. I cannot wait to see it from the kiln. (I will share pictures when it is done)

In telling this it reminds of the scripture about the potter in Isaiah 64:8(Message): Still, God, you are our Father. We’re the clay and you’re our potter: All of us are what you made us.

God our Creator took dirt, shaped it, molded it, burnished it, breathed into it.  What is so cool is that God is still doing that: every time we mess up, feel damaged and just want to give up, God reached down, dips us in grace, smooths out the rough spots, patches the broken places and burnishes us again. We then go back into the world refreshed and whole and share it with other “pottery bowls” that need some TLC from THE POTTER.

Can’t wait till next week: going to make a slab box! This should be interesting.

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Rehearsing – can be very taxing!

I am in a play which will be presented Feb 4/5! We had our first rehearsals without our scripts – always the longest during the process.  I was not too bad but could have been much better. Felt for the others especially our lead – she has about 2 minutes OFF stage.  She did a great job considering she was suffering from major sinus stuff.  It is going to be a great show and I hope it will be well attended.

Rehearsing our prayer life is necessary also.  Creating habits that benefit us is harder than the we think. Setting time(our biggest obstacle) aside to be quiet, talk with God, listen to God, gets pushed aside by what is deemed more important.  My goal is to improve this habit, rehearse during a scheduled time. Of course when should that time be set up.

Are you up for the challenge?

Clean-up – Ugh!

Ok, did not get called in to substitute today. So what to do? Waiting to get a call to work makes each day a new adventure. Like writing a blog and really doing well with it and you hit a button and it is GONE!!! So this is a second attempt. So back on track:

So WHAT to do? I need to clean the food storage containers I emptied after cleaning the frig looking for the cottage cheese, which by the way was perfect with my blueberry yogurt and vanilla granola. Which I need to eat everyday, along with oatmeal. Like oatmeal, it is just I have to actually cook this kind(microwaving IS cooking) and it is not the kind that is prepackage and full of sugar. But then I have to wash the dishes. Why does every fun project have a clean-up to it?  Part of life, we make a mess then we clean it up and hopefully in a good way. We clean the kitchen, the laundry room the bedroom, the bathroom but how often to think about the heart room? “I do not have a heart room” you are saying to me. Yeah ya do – it is located in the center of your soul.  This needs a daily cleaning. The new is year is still a little new, but a new day happens more often. We need to treat each day as a new beginning of possibilities: for a change, improvement, lifting up another, learning, overcoming.  Even through our daily routines, something new can happen. Now some of my OCD friends would flip out if there is any change, but adding a spice to the daily can open us to a new perspective and point of view.

God did when creation began, and again when Jesus came to walk among us. God added something which turned our world upside down: a way of serving each other that did not involve all the rules and dogma we humans created.  God wants us to clean up our mess out of unconditional love not out of obligation or legality.  Grace is so much more than rules adn traditions, it is about a relationship: with God, with Jesus and with each other. We do not have to do this alone.

OK, I still have to do the dishes and wash some laundry. But I am also going to take care of my heart room also making sure what I do is not for my advancement or self-interest. Today is Tuesday, a new beginning. What will you do today?

 

2012 – Exciting things to come

Just had an incredible evening planning an interfaith young adult group in my hometown. And what is cool is the ideas were coming from the other two participating in the conversation! Which is what is leadership is about – empowering others to create and question and then lead. 

We are hoping to create a space where young adults come together and explore their place as followers of Christ. How they can serve the community and in turn serve God.  It looks like this could be a missional group, but we will let the group decide.  In order that true community happens everyone involved needs to contributed.

I am so excited and I plan for 2012 to share my journey in this blog with them and my own call to ministry: Is this a direction God is unfolding for me?  Or do I continue to seek a pastoral call in an organized situation? 2012 is going to be exciting! Didn’t I already say that?

Til next week-

Shalom