I write as the sun is setting. More noted because the sun was visible today! We have had much rain and snow during these past few weeks. The blue sky is turning dark but not before it gives small rainbows to the clouds, revealing colors bright against the winter sky.
Saturday evening has always been a time of preparation. The Sunday schedule for a priest is packed with details often unexpected. Having those things you “think you can control” in place before Sunday morning can be crucial! Things such as locating copies of bulletins, having sermon complete and where it can be found, checking the hymns posted on the boards in the sanctuary. Like preparing for guests in our home, this is a time of preparation to greet the people who will enter the red doors on early Sabbath morning. Perhaps to help with balance or to feel in control, whatever the reason, that last walk-through the sanctuary often brought moments of gratitude and quiet peace.
My Saturday evenings are very different now. Retired, I often find myself a bit unsettled as this day’s sun begins to set. Old habits are hard to break especially when they are an important part of one’s spiritual journey. As life changes so does living and adapting to this change takes time. Finding a way to express one’s vocation as a retired priest, takes discipline and a sense of ‘being-in-place’. The weeks move ahead toward the date marking my first year in Asheville and these mountains. Roots have barely taken, yet my sense of place and home, is certainly more heartfelt.
As I settle into this home and community, I find myself longing for a sanctuary. The past holds my practice and foundation. Opportunities for creativity and growth are before me. Short on patience, I eagerly look to the future and gratefully rely on the past.
The prayer below is meant for the closing of the day. Within, it offers words of comfort and challenge for any time of transition. May it inspire each reader in your own spirit’s journey.(found at Sacred Space )
In God’s loving presence I unwind the past day,
starting from now and looking back,
moment by moment.
I gather in all the goodness and light,
I attend to the shadows and what they say to me,
seeking healing, courage, forgiveness.
4 thoughts on “As the sun begins to set”
dear Carrie, i join you in gathering all the goodness and light in gratitude.
A community of gratitude – what a great place to be. Peace…
Dear Carrie, It was so interesting to get a glimpse into the life of a priest, especially the day before the a sermon. What strikes me having watched your life so closely of late is that your church is in session every day at Bella Vista. While there may not be a sermon on Sunday or any day for that matter, you are ministering in your home (the larger community) day and night. My family was/is so blessed to have you in their lives. God was truly in all the details of the end of my mother’s life and so wise to present you as an eternal gift. My love to you, Lita
Lita- your words are kind. Thank you. Bella Vista is home and so much more – for that I am grateful. Quita made certain that blessings would always be near. Look what happened!! In peace…