Refreshing Rains

by Christine Sine

by Christine Sine

This morning I wandered around our garden in the rain, inhaling the wonderful aroma of petrichor in the air. You may remember that last week I talked about my spiritual practice of walking around the garden early in the morning watering my plants and Vigen Guroian’s comment that this was a little like baptism. Well this morning as I walked around in the rain, it was like baptism and anointing with oil all melded into one. This was our first rain for a couple of months and the sense of renewal and refreshment was incredible. I almost felt I could hear the plants singing and rejoicing. Walking in the rain is a fun spiritual practice, that I normally indulge in in winter when rain is far more frequent in the Pacific NW. However this year’s exceptionally dry summer has made me realize once again, what an incredible gift rain can be and that we should not take it for granted.

I find more and more that paying attention to the Godspace posts gives important insights and guidance for the week. National Ice Cream Day was followed by our neighbourhood ice cream summer social, a fun gathering of neighbours and neighbourhood businesses to get to know each other and appreciate our neighbourhood. Carol Dixon’s International Friendship Day post had me giving thanks for friends at home and across the world. I even sent out a few appreciation notes and received a few in return.

Laurie Klein in her post on St Mildred’s Day introduced most of us to a new and very interesting Celtic saint who was a paragon of gentleness, generous compassion, and serenity, St. Mildred was an advocate for widows and orphans, troubled people and social pariahs.

Lilly Lewin continues to inspire me with her prayer station ideas. Like her I have been reading the First Nation’s Version of the New Testament and loved that in her Freerange Friday: Joining Jesus on the Road of Love, that she drew creatively from this and especially its translation of I Cor 13 “Love keeps walking even when carrying a heavy load.
Love keeps trusting, never loses hope, and stands firm in hard times. The road of love has no end. “ Like Lilly, I appreciate the rich array of Biblical translations that are now available and the ways that different perspectives of the Biblical text broadens our understanding of the story. And Lilly Lewin’s creative use makes it even richer.

Sheila Hamil also uses scripture creatively in her post The Parable of the Light As she says “if we make a conscious effort to set a guard on our eyes, and take in what St Paul recommends in his letter to the Philippians, we will have light for our souls and God’s peace in our heart. “ A very informative article.

My own Meditation Monday: Kintsugi – The Art of Mending Broken Pieces this week is on the Japanese practice of Kintsugi, which I practiced, over the weekend. My attempts were not very successful but I certainly learned a lot as I used the practice to reflect on the broken places of my life and the ways that God is slowly making me whole. As I said:  None of us are without flaws yet God is able to mend and make all of us whole. And when God mends it is like pure gold has been added to our lives. There is beauty hidden in the brokenness all of us struggle with. God does not discard us because we are broken. Our remade selves are grounded in the transformation of our brokenness.

As I mentioned last week I am preparing for three virtual retreats in the coming season so make sure you have these on your calendars, the event pages should be live next week. September 2nd – Rhythms and Seasons, October 14th – Living in Gratitude, and December 9th – Advent Quiet Day Retreat. I hope you can join me for this series. Each will be a stand alone retreat but the series together, I think will enrich our lives, nourish us through the rest of the year and prepare us for a busy new year coming.

A prayer request and call for help too as I end this newsletter.  Some of you may remember that I planned to launch my podcast The Liturgical Rebel in September. I am not sure that will happen as I need technical and graphic design help to set it up. I expected to have an intern over the summer who wanted to work with me on this, but her internship application was denied. If you would like to help me launch this exciting new venture, or if you know someone who might like to help please let me know.

My stargazer lilies are flowering at the moment so I thought I would end with yet another beautiful Mary Oliver poem.

Mary Oliver  – “Lilies” from House of Light

I have been thinking
about living
like the lilies
that blow in the fields.
They rise and fall
in the edge of the wind,
and have no shelter
from the tongues of the cattle,
and have no closets or cupboards,
and have no legs.
Still I would like to be
as wonderful
as the old idea.
But if I were a lily
I think I would wait all day
for the green face
of the hummingbird
to touch me.
What I mean is,
could I forget myself
even in those feathery fields?
When Van Gogh
preached to the poor
of course he wanted to save someone–
most of all himself.
He wasn’t a lily,
and wandering through the bright fields
only gave him more ideas
it would take his life to solve.
I think I will always be lonely
in this world, where the cattle
graze like a black and white river–
where the vanishing lilies
melt, without protest, on their tongues–
where the hummingbird, whenever there is a fuss,
just rises and floats away.

Many blessings

Gift of Wonder bundle

Gift of Wonder bundle

Gift of Wonder Bundle
Book + Prayer Cards

Purchase a copy of Christine’s book Gift of Wonder and we will include a set of the prayer cards made to accompany it. These cards are designed to enrich your book study and practice. Prayers from the book are illustrated with images to assist your contemplation. The back of each card provides a short excerpt with a question for you to reflect on.

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