Today’s post is by Bonnie Wallace The call to discernment is a call to deep rest and abiding presence. This type of rest is a source of renewal and openness. As Tilden Edwards explains in Sabbath Time, “Our minds and our prayers need to relax their frequent weekday grasping, striving, judging, fearing. Full rest is […]
Today’s post is by Patience Robbins For awhile now I have had a deep yearning to empower young adults. As I see the state of our world, I am so concerned that they will be prepared and ready for what they will need to address. This is such a profound longing in my heart that I pray […]
We were 25 women standing in a large circle, arms outstretched, only touching one another by our fingertips. In the center of the circle stood Flirt, a 1200 pound horse. It was our job to keep Flirt inside the circle. It was Flirt’s job to get out.
Guess who won.
Flirt gave one little flick of her eye, glanced around the circle and simply walked out underneath one pair of outstretched arms.
This was part of an exercise that uses horses to give feedback on leadership qualities. The setting was a large exercise barn at a horse farm in the Pennsylvania countryside. The horses were teaching us which behaviors encouraged their trust and what led them to bolt and run, which actions engendered confidence and what confused them. In other words, how to lead.
Today’s post is by Jamie Deering Spring offers us evocative reminders of the power and strength in rebirth. Seeds wintering below the surface of soot and soil waiting for love’s signal to sprout. Birds of the air and fish of the sea beginning their long migrations to nesting grounds across testing terrain. My own inner […]
Every once in a while, we find ourselves making a Shame Sandwich. You know the kind. Usually it starts out with a layer of “bad.” Something we feel badly about like being late, or forgetting a birthday, or leaving that cup of coffee in the microwave for three days. Then, the next thing you know, we add a layer of shame, guilt, worry, and sometimes fear. Of course, we load up on the mayonnaise and maybe even add some old, familiar stale story bread. Then, we get to serve ourselves, a good old Shame Sandwich.
There were days in my parish ministry when I wondered if there was anything “spiritual” happening in our church community. We often seemed to be caught up in preserving the institution, instead of deepening our relationship with the Holy One and each other. In looking back, I am aware of the Spirit’s quiet nudge to enroll in this program whose subtitle said it all: “going deeper.”
In my first residency, I knew I was in the right place. To a person, we were hungry, for true spiritual community, where we could share our hunger with others and our deep desire to be spiritually grounded leaders. Our gatherings were filled with many occasions of powerful spiritual presence in communal silence. There were incredible seminars that opened our minds and awakened our hearts. There was a real sense of our common life together, one built on trust, where we could be vulnerable, practice deep listening and share seriously with light hearts, joy and a sense of humor. We were living in a spiritual community.
I said “yes” to writing a blog. At the time, writing a blog about something I loved seemed like a piece of cake. I could instantly see all of the prayers I would include, the artwork, the inspirational music videos and more. I was excited to create the blog until I actually started writing and wondering how I would fill its approximately 50 blog posts.
The topic was Lent and all of the days leading up to the magnificent Easter celebration. In the midst of creating the posts I was thinking about my own Lenten journey. I was praying for perfect words and a clean heart so that the posts would be holy and a blessing. I was trying to get it just right and was feeling very overwhelmed.