Breathing in Haze

by Christine Sine
pexels cmonphotography 1809644

by Christine Sine

I am looking out on a very hazy Seattle this morning, a legacy of wildfires in the area. It changed my plans for the weekend as I was not able to work outside in the garden because of the air pollution. Climate extremes are changing all of our plans these days. I am reading about the deluge from tropical storm Hilary and the devastation in Southern California and other states as well as the ongoing saga of the fires that swept through Lahaina, Maui, Yellowknife, Canada, and the Spanish island of Tenerife. I am also painfully aware that my changes of plans are minor compared to what others face. The United Nations has been forced to cut food, cash payments and assistance to millions of people in many countries because of “a crippling funding crisis” that has seen its donations plummet by about half as acute hunger is hitting record levels.

My heart aches and I find myself praying this prayer from The World in Prayer:

Beloved One, interrupt us
In unexpected encounters,
In the midst of our preoccupations,
In the middle of all the “oughts” and “shoulds” of our lives.
Beloved One, interrupt us
That we might meet you.
Interrupt us, that we might be you
When the world needs to be interrupted.

One thing that helps me focus my life and my thoughts away from my own needs and onto those of the marginalized and suffering is the rhythm of retreats that is increasingly at the centre of my life. I love John O’Donohue’s encouragement to stay in rhythm with eternal breath. What does that look like? I ask in my Meditation Monday -The Rhythm of Eternal Breath. This question is the focus of my thoughts and prayers this week as I prepare for the upcoming retreats: Rhythms and Seasons on September 2nd, A Season of Gratitude on October 14th and An Advent Quiet Day December 9th. I am increasingly aware that the rhythm God calls us to may not revolve around the liturgical calendar or the seasons of the year but is indeed a call to draw our lives into that rhythm of Eternal breath, a rhythm that Jesus obviously maintained in his life. I am excited about the direction that my preparation for these retreats is taking me in and I hope you will join me for what promises to be an inspiring series of discussions and creative activity.

I am delighted that my husband Tom Sine is once more contributing to Godspacelight. His post Join Those Welcoming the Good News Generation encourages us to learn more about how your church can engage members of the Good News Generation where you live to create neighborhood empowerment projects. Make sure you don’t miss it.

I also love Jean Andrianoff’s Rethinking Clouds and her exploration of the both positive and negative connotations given to clouds in the Bible.

In Freerange Friday – Back to School – What’s In Your Backpack? this week Lilly Lewin  asks us “What is Jesus… the Rabbi, the teacher, inviting you to do this season? Great suggestions not just for those who are going back to school or have kids heading off back to school.

Don’t miss All The Eggs in One Basket by Karen Wilk with the stunning artwork by Karen Tamminga-Paton. It is a delightful and thought provoking read.

On Wednesday last week June Friesen introduced us to National Relaxation Day and encouraged us to:

Rest from the daily grind….
Rest from the race to be first….
Rest from the burden of always saying, ‘yes’,

One thing you may notice is that our posts increasingly incorporate poetry as a means of communication. It is a very powerful tool as I mentioned some years ago in my post Meditation Monday The Power of Poetry.  Our appreciation of poetry is not just confined to the psalms. Many of us are discovering that writing and reading poetry stirs all our senses in profound and enriching ways. I hope that you too have discovered this wonderful tool too.

May God continue to enrich your life and may your journey this week flow in rhythm with God’s eternal breath

Photo by cmonphotography on pixels

 Christine Sine is offering three seasonal, virtual retreats to explore living in balance and in line with the natural and liturgical rhythms of the year. Join her for one or all of them September 2, October 14 and December 9. These retreats will encourage us to center ourselves and our lives as we move through the seasons beginning in Fall and moving through Advent. They will be times of reflection, creativity and fun.

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