And silence, like darkness,
can be kind; it, too, is a language.
Hanif Kureishi, Intimacy (Scribner, 1999)
“There’s something about the night,” Mr. Keenan said, reflecting on his boss’s use of the time.
“It’s smaller. It lets you think.”
quote – Obama After Dark (New York Times, July 2 2016). Found in The Vale of Soul-Making
image – Pinterest
Within your heart, keep one still, secret spot where dreams may go.
Awake at 4:30am, I wonder what has stirred me?
These past weeks I trained several new caregivers. Many hours have been spent sharing personal details and staying very alert to our every move. This type of training is much like dancing – together we learn the steps and build the trust needed to lead and follow.
Then there is the introduction to my life. Where is my family? Why did I move to Asheville? Do I like to shop, read books, watch tv… Questions begin to slow when I explain my vocation — an Episcopal priest, where I have lived — from the East Coast to the West Coast, my schedule — time for quiet, prayer, writing projects, workshops and meeting friends for food and fun. Most caregivers are not accustomed to working with folks like me, active people who live with a disability. It takes a while to get oriented. My job– to be patient. Be patient and remember to protect the space for my dreams.
I have a dear friend who once asked how I managed to have any privacy and time for myself. She watched my life as it always seemed filled with people. People, who by necessity, must be in my rooms and touch many of my belongings. She could not imagine how I might find a way to have private time and space. “No one caregiver knows everything about me.”, I replied. “Somehow I am able to create a space that allows for privacy and solitude.”
This is not to say that finding private time is easy. And so I return to my opening question:
Awake at 4:30, I wonder what has stirred me? It is my alarm for peaceful time alone. When most of the world still sleeps, I awaken ready to revisit my dreams. My eyes open to discover a moment when images and ideas can rise to the surface and find expression.
This time is never taken for granted. It has to be honored. All of the people who assist me with the details of my daily life rely on my ability to find these moments. It is time to remember my dreams and find ways to bring them to life.
I welcome this opportunity and give thanks for a new day.
“Prayer is simply hope captured.”
So many people seek hope. So many stretch to find a spiritual path. Does it have to be so difficult? Do we make things too complicated?
My intuition is to think – yes. The path often lays out right before us and hope a natural way of connecting to something greater than ourselves.The words that follow are taken from the FaceBook page of Bishop Steven Charleston Visit if you get a chance. His reflections are clear, inspiring and accessible.
In your search for quiet and reflection, may the flames of hope light your path to prayer…
“Hope is the match, prayer is the fire. If you know someone who needs a little help in getting a prayer life going, ask them if they ever hope for something. Its a safe bet that they do. And all the time. Humans are hopeful creatures. We are in an almost daily state of hope. We hope it won’t rain. We hope we get better. We hope we win. Hope is a constant for us in our emotional matrix. Prayer is simply hope captured. Rather than a fleeting wish, through prayer hope becomes a focused intention. Prayer matures hope by allowing God to light a fire.”
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