it is friday night. my delicious holiday break, time away from my work, began at 1 pm today. i exhale into the abundant space. i will reside in this cozy nest of warmth & twinkle-light & merrymaking for days & days. i am so grateful.
grateful, i think of the words below, which i heard for the first time nearly 10 years ago. a Blackle search indicates these words are from Ted Loder, contained in his book, Guerrillas of Grace. here's an excerpt:
"...out of the thoughts and feelings which whirl within,
I grope for language to carry to you my secrets
and all the wonders that seize my heart.
Praise be to you
for holding me in the womb of mystery
through all the eons of creation until now
and raising me to life
in this time and place.
I am so thankful to be alive—
breathing, moving, sensing,
wide-eyed, cock-eared alive—
in this mysterious instant,
at this luminous time,
on this nurturing earth,
this blue pearl of great price
whirling through uncharted space,
attended by vigilant stars;
during these days of chance and battle,
with streaks of hope and holiness on the horizon,
touched by nature’s pleading beauty
and friendship’s steady hold.
I am so thankful to be alive—
eyes in love with seeing,
ears in love with hearing,
heart in love with attending,
mind in love with connecting;
eager to miss no message of grace
in the ballet of beauty
or in the cramp of struggle
of this incredible gift of life;
attentive to all the clues of love,
daringly and outlandishly
scattered for me through Jesus’s life,
overturning habit and hate;
attentive to the dreams he renews,
the wounds he heals,
the promises he nails up
for me to step out on.
I am so thankful to be alive,
thankful for those times
when the rhythms of my life
catch the cadences of your kingdom,
when there is a lightening in me
for a moment,
when the creep of courage
allows me to dare to serve the gifts
you have put in me;
thankful for the neighbors you have put besides me,
and the possibilities you have put before me;
thankful for the surge of determination to accept difficulty
not as an excuse for passivity,
but as a goad to creativity,
as the door to abundant life,
and the seed of a peace the world cannot take away,
as it takes away so much else.
I am so thankful to be alive...
hold me always in the womb of mystery
and raise me again and again, forever,
and to love..."
such jewels in these words. what are the wonders seizing your heart? do you feel held in the womb of mystery? do you find this time luminous? do you see the streaks of hope & holiness on the horizon? what are the messages of grace you are receiving? do you feel the lightening? i wonder, dear wonders...
currently i am honoring this holy season in these ways:
*making a donation in bella's name to support the creation of a student circus at an elementary school in northern virgina. i know the ringmaster; she is a teacher at the school and a magical friend.
*drinking cups of hot cocoa with whipped cream & decaf earl grey tea with a smidge of sugar & soy milk.
*making cookies to share with family & friends. classic spritz cookies made with a cookie press in the shapes of hearts & trees, colored & sprinkled; peanut butter cookies; coconut thumb print cookies; chocolate walnut cookies; and, raisin walnut cookies.
*getting a manicure & pedicure. my toes were painted glittery red! so festive. i will have to show everyone my toes at every holiday gathering. he-he.
*allowing space for my experience & my grief. letting myself cry & cry more when i need to.
*participating in two winter solstice events. one at a friend's home tonight and another at a local unitarian church tomorrow night.
*gathering at my parents' home on sunday evening for a celebration with bella's beloved hometown peeps & her dynamite roomie from college.
*welcoming an angel guest for a visit to my city for a few days after christmas.
*attending christmas eve mass.
*donating blood this early morning.
*listening to Wintersong.