by Christine Sine
In a world shadowed by cruelty
violence and loss is there good reason
for the planting of flowers?
For these bursts of colour
and beautiful blooms
are bright dabs of grace
witnesses of a promise,
reminders of a spreading beauty
more eternal and therefore stronger
then any evil, then any grief
then any injustice or violence.
I am currently in Texas, having just made my first plane trip since the beginning of COVID. One of the last things I did before I left home was to walk around the garden to admire my sunflowers, dahlias, and gladioli now all in full bloom. I also did a little last-minute deadheading on my roses and picked the first of our summer squash. Leaving everything in its glorious display and summer abundance was almost as hard as leaving my husband Tom and our dog Goldie.
While at the airport waiting for my flight, I read through the beautiful liturgy above from a new app I have just discovered called Every Moment Holy. Reading through a short prayer or liturgy like this has long been part of my travel ritual. Once I settle in to wait for an early morning flight I find it relaxing and renewing, a practice that recentres my soul after the stress of getting up early and negotiating check-in protocols. This liturgy is meant to accompany spring planting, but I found myself entering into its inspiring words as a soothing reminder of our creator God, who, as the liturgy goes on to say,
has scattered the evidences
of creation’s former glories
across the entire scape of heaven and earth.
Here in Texas, the flowers are different and the breathtaking beauty of the giant oaks and the glories of the sunset is different but it is just as impacting. More evidence of creation’s former glories scattered across the entire scape of heaven and earth. I am aware of it every time I pause to admire one of my flowers or gasp in awe at the tiny bees (especially the green bees) gathering pollen in the flower’s centre. I am aware of it too as I gaze up at the sky, not just at sunset but at any time of day when the fascinating shapes of clouds catch my attention.
As I experience the uplift in my spirit that this liturgy from Every Moment Holy, it reminds me again of how important the reciting of psalms, prayers, and liturgies can be. Writing them can be even more powerful, a wonderful act of joining our creator in the ongoing act of creation that will one day restore our world.
What prayers, psalms, and liturgies uplift your soul in this season? Most of us are feeling weary and wrung out and we need refreshment. I hope that you will read through this liturgy (available from their app which you can find through the website). Perhaps you would like to combine it with a psalm and a refreshing walk in a park or around your garden or neighbourhood.
As happened to me, your own prayer might bubble up within or you might like to express yourself in some other creative way.
Pay attention as a way of life
Listen where you are
To the God who inhabits
And everyday events.
Mark God’s presence
on hands and heads and doorways,
the entryways to our hearts and minds and souls.
Immerse your days
in the sacred sounds and holy sights
of everyday things
infused with the extraordinary possibilities
Of God’s creative presence.
Scatter seeds of glory
into the broken places of our world.
Receive the sounds you hear with gratitude.
Respond with joy.
Let wonder emerge once more.
Want to experience more of the awe and wonder that God offers us? Check out the Gift of Wonder Online Retreat by Christine Sine. This retreat allows for 180 days of access for only $39.99 so you can move through the sessions at your own pace.