Ancient Eternal Presence
Today’s post is by Jamie Deering.
Nature. Wild and free. Tempestuous and Serene. Open and Life-giving. Healing. This could describe nature anywhere, and for me, it describes the wonder and magnificence of the Olympic Peninsula in Washington state. I’ve lived in desert, middle ground, and for the last 33 years, mountain, sea and open air. In no other place have I known and steeped in the vast love of God the way I do in my homeland.
I arise in the morning and God’s presence permeates all the senses. Opening a door ushers in water scents– salt mixed with fresh – pervading nostrils and igniting memories of ancient eternal presence. The crisp air in most every season massages Spirit’s presence into my skin. And the sights. Oh, the wonder and awe of the sights. Tall cedars extending their praise to the heavens. Squirrels gathering their thanks and joining the trees. Fox, deer, bear, mountain lion, eagle, and animals too many to name, joining their charismatic call to the abundance and provision of God.
Land here sprawls out from either the Pacific Ocean or Puget Sound, an estuary fingering its way along shores where salt water mixes with fresh water, offering underwater valleys and ridges in a deep basin of flowing life. In the deep in-flowing and out-flowing of water, the Puget Sound retells the diversity, intensity, and expansiveness of God’s love. Always flowing, always nudging and drawing us along. Sometimes gently, sometimes turbulently. I’ve known both in my life and during tumultuous times, I look to the steadiness of mountain and water for grounding and stability. I feel the solidness of earth and hear the reassuring ebb and flow of water chanting “all is well.”
This area simply and profoundly offers itself to me in the deepest reminder possible that love is the only thing that is real. And that, in divine love, all is well. All is well. Watching morning clouds steam off to sunshine, transforming grey sky to golden-hued ribbons dancing across the water, beckons trust, peace, serenity, faith and hope in their fullest dimensions. And the sparkling water so lights up my heart that I know the essence of God filtering through my very cells. I know connection and expansiveness from the inside out and offer this deep knowing into the world in a natural flow that mirrors the nature in which I’m steeped.
Every chance I get, I invite people to come explore the Olympic Peninsula. It is unique and offers a profound sense of our connection with ALL living things. Our connection whose origins are in us, with us, through us and IN the world. Living in the Olympic Peninsula is living in the essence of Divine Spirit. I am so excited to be experiencing this with others on the upcoming Shalem Earth Pilgrimage. I can’t wait to share in listening deeply into Earth as we gather to be, reflect and notice, and from this place of noticing, receive what is ours to do.
The Olympic Peninsula, at the northwest edge of the continental United States, offers a rare and unique experience of one of God’s cathedrals. Consider joining Shalem on Uniting with Earth’s Rhythm: A Pilgrimage in the Pacific Northwest, led by Jamie Deering and Leah Rampy, Sept 24 to Oct 1, 2016. There are only a couple of spaces left! Apply today.