Saturday, June 27, 2015

A Credo after these Days

Some days ago I received a gift in the mail. It had no fewer than 37 stamps stuck on the outside of it and it was wrapped in paper. An 85 year old sister of mine had been collecting my writings over the years and as part of her paring down, she sent me a binder full of them.

So many memories are in these pages...each poem or letter or essay is a point of time on the journey that has brought me to the here and now... Many of the pieces served their moment and can retire to history, some can be reworked and used again on different occasions.

One pair of pages, though, stood out, especially during these last couple of days when there has been a concentration of beautiful and devastating events in the world. Sometime in the early 2000s I wrote a creed. It got posted early on in my blogging career.

Finding it again, just now, inspires me to write one as who I am at This moment.

I Believe--in the wonder that is God.

I believe the wonder of God is caught up in Love and I believe Love will lead me home. Love for me is all about God and the God who has my heart filled to overflowing is expansive, uncontainable, passionate, and utterly astounding. This Love has no room for hate. No room for "not welcome," for "better than," or for "not worthy."

And God calls me on it when I veer down any other path and start filling up on something less.

Love has no room for bombs. It has no room for guns wielded against innocents, for prejudice, for condemnation, for subtraction or division.

This Love I believe in has room only for multiplication and addition. This Love is about life, and transformation and not being alone, about compassion and mercy and justice.

This Love is what calls me to act, calls me to put my gifts and my talents at the service of a wounded world that is teeming with contradiction, violence on a horrific scale, devastating righteousness, grace-filled humanity, deep beauty, and unshakable hope.

When all is said and done, I believe that Love is the light shining in the darkness and the darkness will not ever overcome it.

This I believe.

 

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Glory Be

This Trinity Sunday, I was caught more than ever by the all encompassing nature of our triune God..Point of origin, companion on the journey, and what will bear us home. There is no blank page in the story...no empty moment. That is the way it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be...the trinty of time.

To reflect on this, to re-member this, is the call of Moses to the people in the first reading from Deuteronomy. It is a great reading (that BEGS to be proclaimed with a certain fervor); however, it is the last line of the Gospel that stays with me at day's end as I take up pen and keyboard.

And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.

And behold. Take note. Take awe seriously. Go ahead and laugh too. And beauty? Revel in it. Create it, share it, encourage it. Note the prism in tears too, and what is within. Stand with those in pain, those who suffer. Be ready to ache. And even if you are ready, it is going to out and out hurt sometimes. Behold with your being.

I am with you. So go forth and fall sometimes when you try something new. Say Yes. Try. Why not? It's not like I'm ever letting you go. Things are in your favor-- you will ultimately rise once more than you fall.

I am with you always. That? Yes, I know. The time when... Yep. Even though... Um Hm. Always. Remember, I made you. And it was a great idea I had. Trust me. Nothing can separate you from my love. Full stop.

Until the end of the ages. You know when you hold somebody and you sometimes say, "I've got you...I've got you...?" It's like that. Until you become a part of it All. Until you return...Glory unto Glory.

And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.

As I look back over the last week or so of my writings, I see this truth born out over and again. They have been weeks of encounter in a whole variety of settings and ways...The forsythia blooming with might and stupendous intensity; an invitation by someone who thought it would be fun to sing together; coming up with helpful metaphors for a sixteen year old to understand different academic topics; laughing loud and hard with a dear long-time friend; quiet, care filled, sharing at the end of the day with another friend; struggles in knowing how to best serve the needs of the literacy student I help, chatting with people at the farmer's market, airport runs at sunset, helping get ready for our Assembly/Chapter this summer, a stranger holding the door for me when I had a full cup of coffee...

There is no blank page in the story. Glory be to God, thanks be to God, world without end, Amen.



 

 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Hand in hand

An entry from this morning...


6:37 AM... Est l'heure de prendre un café avec une chatte qui mange son petit-déjeuner...

I woke to my room being filled with the most wonderful light...first light, warm, embracing light. Hope for that was part of my motivation for leaving my blind slats open when going to bed last night, I confess...

I enjoy the wonder of serendipity and receiving the unexpected joys of trying to live open to you; the unexpected joys of walking with my arms down at my sides, desiring to be spacious, rooted And loosely bound, the both, aware and available. That grand bit of leaf art yesterday is a perfect example. Such thorough gift sown plentifully in my wandering journey.

That said, I also enjoy planning for encounters with you. Leaving the blind slats open; rising early enough to watch the sun blink over the horizon; waiting for the fireflies; even intentionally setting out on a walk through the Public Gardens or traipsing off on a meander through the farmers' market that holds the promise of coffee, a munch, people watching, and writing.

It's a both-and, a hand in hand... I love that about you.

(And the daffodils are spectacular, by the way.)

 

 

Friday, May 8, 2015

Lighthearted Coffee Company

Coffee with Emily

 

Notes slid

left-handedly

with the slightest

curl of lip-

a poem passing,

sparking,

just above the rim.

 

 

Coffee with Pablo

 

You left words for me

before you

and the salted dory

untethered.

The conch kept them

warm in her echo.

 

Coffee with Walt

 

A flower bedecked the band

of your felted journey hat;

your shoes stayed

at the door.

Soles at rest- though

pointing onward, ever

ready to dance.

 







Coffee with Ogden

 

We took our cups

to the aquarium;

We took them to the zoo.

We made up tales

of savannah whales

who speak

as you and I do.

 

 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Not Because I Doubted



Not Because I Doubted


Though hidden beneath layers

worn thin and well tucked;

Hidden in the open spaces, bared

to the winds of history, the contortions of mystery;

 

the invitation was everywhere in you--

voice, whisker, shuffle, silence,

the defiant parry of blue from your eye:

 

Put your finger here, reach out your hand,

lay your knowing, lay your compassion,

upon my wounds.

 

Not because I doubted, rather

because we needed one another

to understand what it means

to hope in the Resurrection.

 

Kimberly M. King, rscj

 

 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

To seek, to Find, and not to Yield

It is not adherents of a teaching but followers of a life that Christ is looking for.

--Søren Kierkegaard--

It is a sobering reflection of his that I read this morning. He writes of the difference between being an admirer and being a follower of Christ. With an admirer, the connect is there in language and enthusiasm, but it does not permeate the life lived in the midst of the quotidian human reality. Things stay compartmentalized for a variety of reasons. He is careful to add that while good people are admirers of Jesus, there is an inherent separation when something or someone is admired.

The follower, however, is set on the conversion of self, on being suffused with the reality and not the ideal of the way Jesus was in this world and among his people.

[There] is absolutely nothing to admire in Jesus, unless you want to

admire poverty, misery, and contempt.

For me, though, I don't think we can truly Live without joy as well--that is part of the "life in abundance." I would like to read something of Kierkegaard's that brings that in too while also speaking to the challenge of steeping ourselves in the lived reality of our neighbors and seeking to help make manifest the longings of God for the world.

How clearly I remember the period of time when I began to close the gap of my own admiring distance...when I began to understand with my Being the invitation extended to me...to know what it is to truly Love and to allow Love to shape me, convert me over and again, time and again, world without end... and thus know greater freedom.

It takes energy to maintain a distance...energy that could be given to something or someone else. How much easier it is to breathe deeply when not quite as bound behind pain or hurt or fear; how much easier to offer understanding to another when I am more able to name and accept my own poverties of heart and spirit and yet know myself to be loved and able to express it; and how much it all makes me ache, sometimes...ache from laughing, ache from beauty, ache from a rending of my heart...

It is precisely this strength and ache and freedom all together that is for me what it means to be a follower of Jesus.

 

 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Turning a Corner

 

I was a part of something small, simple, and beautiful, yesterday. I had gone to the bank for the community and included a swing by the library in my loop homeward. A bonus day for me, I left with a volume apiece from three different series I enjoy. It was brilliantly sunny--a generous, kind, balance to the snowdrifts taller than I am that line the streets and the slush swamps deeper than the ankle that pool at almost every corner.

I was approaching Spring Garden and South Park when I saw a guy I recognized from a coffeeshop I have gone to several times. He has something to do with the music industry. He, in his wheelchair, had an ice spade and was chunking free the frozen expanse at the corner that prevented him from passing easily. I asked if he wanted help. "Sure, if you have a minute! If you could shovel away what I break up, that'd be great." He pointed to a pile of shovels and other tools over by where he'd tossed his jacket.

We were working for some minutes and another guy stopped. "Want a hand?" He spelled the other man with the ice spade.

A woman soon approached. "I've got time. Want help?" She too began to shovel and toss.

Another woman stopped to cross and was watching us.

"You all are the most beautiful thing I have seen in a long time...so much cooperation between people who don't know one another... Thank you. Just...thank you."

I walked the rest of the way home full of thanks for being able to lend a hand, full of thanks for sunshine and the stretch of clear sidewalk beneath my feet, and full of thanks for helping show a woman that at least in one, small, literal, corner of the world, hope is not lost.