Archive for March 26th, 2019

 …. darkness was on the face of the deep: and the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.  Genesis 1:1


Cruising to the Western Caribbean this month, I made sure to book an aft balcony so I could sit by day to watch the sea and by night to watch the stars.The turbulent waters of the ship’s wake is strangely soothing and has always had a special allure for me. I wonder at the dark depths of the ocean while transfixed by the sonorous and chaotic foreground of foaming waters churned up by the ships great propellers.

Many times I’ve thought of this image as a perfect metaphor of our lives: teeming activity and movement on the surface of an otherwise silent ocean. This year, I am experiencing the Lenten Season as a quiet search for what lies hidden, wrapped in silence and timelessness. Rather than hectic excursions ashore to just do more things as we island hop, I find myself content to just be on the ship, sailing – doing nothing in particular, except: watch cloud formations, islands in the distance, turquoise water, the beauty of occasional approaching squall lines of rain at sea, playing delightful silly games with my granddaughter, and taking in the miraculous canopy of stars. All of this is especially enriched by morning and evening prayer with the Canticles and the Psalms as companions adding particular depth, punctuation and resonance. 

Glorify the Lord, you angels and all powers of the Lord, * O heavens and all waters above the heavens. Sun and moon and stars of the sky, glorify the Lord, * praise him and highly exalt him for ever.Glorify the Lord, every shower of rain and fall of dew, * all winds and fire and heat. Winter and Summer, glorify the Lord, * praise him and highly exalt him for ever. Glorify the Lord, O chill and cold, * drops of dew and flakes of snow Frost and cold, ice and sleet, glorify the Lord, * praise him and highly exalt him for ever. {p. 89} Glorify the Lord, O nights and days, * O shining light and enfolding dark. Storm clouds and thunderbolts, glorify the Lord, * praise him and highly exalt him for ever. Canticle 12, I, The Cosmic Order

I am also taking an online course with Franciscan Friar Richard Rohr that is cleverly titled: The Franciscan Way: Beyond the Birdbath”. It is well timed with the cruise and my intention to look ever more closely to find God in everyone, everywhere, and in everything without exception. Saint Francis intuitively discovered the unity of all being as he so eloquently expresses in his “Canticle of the Creatures”. When every breath we take is a prayer, we come closer to what Jesus knew  the profound intimacy of a direct experience of the Great Lover. After the Resurrection, Jesus promised to ‘be with us always’. He is in the Light all around us, in the air, pervading everything with his loving Presence. Being fully alive to His miraculous Presence in the here and now is to live in imitation of Him!

We are the “Imago Dei”. In His image are we made. Lent is our time to get back to that essential truth and peel away the many layers of distraction. It is all about making room for Christ to fill. Brother Richard Rohr speaks often of an “alternative Franciscan orthodoxy” that places primary emphasis on Incarnation over Redemption, Original Blessing over Original Sin. In His first act of creation, God created light out of nothingness, the “void, and He declared that “ It Was Good”. The chief sign of true conversion in Christ is Joy. 

All matter and energy emerged from Light– Goodness and, at the core, we too are LightMay we do what stars do and may your Eastertide be filled with arising!

© The Harried Mystic, 2019 and Br. Anton, TSSF. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

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