Streams of Water

Today’s post is by Maria Cristina Borges Alvarez, a Cuban priest serving in the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego

As the deer pants for the water,
so my soul pants for you, O God.
My soul thirsts for God,
for the living God.

~Psalm 42, 1-2a

How my soul has longed for those streams of water since I was a little child! I did not know then that there might be a place on this earth where I could drink of such waters, until I encountered a beautiful soul on the journey who took me to Shalem, a place I have found to be a dwelling of Heaven on earth.

Such profound wisdom is revealed to us in the words of the Psalmist above. Our special journey [as clergy and spiritual leaders] demands constant connection with the Light so that we might know the sacredness of our mission in every moment, in every calling. Those streams of living water are tasted in the countless ways of contemplative disciplines, which Shalem offers to nurture our souls, minds, spirits and bodies. In all the unknown paths of the labryinth of creation, each of them shows the footprints of the Living Presence. Each of them makes possible our growth in both the divine and the human realms.

May we long for those streams of living water now! May we desire to bathe in their freshness of mercy, peace, love and justice! May their irresistible beauty lift up our souls in joy and wonder.

Como el ciervo brama por
las corrientes de las aguas,
Así clama por ti, oh Dios,
el alma mía.

~Salmo 42, 1-2a

¡Tanto ha anhelado mi alma esas corrientes de agua desde mi niñez! No sabía entonces que hubiese un lugar en esta tierra donde pudiera beber incesantemente de tales aguas hasta que conocí un alma bella, compañera de viaje, la cual me condujo hasta Shalem, lugar que ha sido para mí una de las moradas celestiales en la tierra.

¡Cuán produnda es la sabiduría que nos revelan las palabras del salmista! Nuestro viaje espiritual demanda de nosotros una constante conexión con la Luz, de manera que podamos conocer la sacralidad de nuestra misión en todo momento, en cada llamado. Estas corrientes de agua pueden ser saboreadas en las incontables formas de disciplina contemplativa que el instituto de Shalem ofrece en sus programas para nutrir nuestras almas, mentes, y cuerpos al recorrer los senderos desconocidos en el laberinto de la Creación. Cada uno de ellos nos deja ver las huellas de la Viva Presencia de Dios. Cada uno de ellos hace posible que crezcamos en ambas reinos, el divino y el humano.

¡Que justo ahora estemos anhelando esas corrientes de agua! ¡Que nuestro deseo sea bañarnos en la frescura de su compasión, de su paz, de su amor y de su justicia! ¡Que la belleza irresistible de tales corrientes animen nuestras almas en gozo y admiración constantes!

For those in ministry: Do you wish to deepen your spiritual life and open yourself more fully to God? Do you yearn to lead from your spiritual heart and from a revitalized sense of call? Do you long to engage contemplative practices within the context of your congregation? If your answers are yes, then the Spirit may be calling you to Go Deeper with Shalem’s Clergy Spiritual Life and Leadership Program. The deadline to apply is March 15. Click here to learn more and apply.

Listen to the audio of this post here:
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February 02, 2017 by Maria Cristina Borges Alvarez
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Our mission is to nurture contemplative living and leadership.


Grounded in our understanding of God’s desire for peace, wholeness and well-being, we envision a world transformed by contemplative living and leadership in which all people honor one another and creation, recognize their unity and interconnectedness, and courageously seek to live out of this reality.