“God is so mighty, as reflected through God’s works, that the psalmist underscores the absolute insignificance of humans (v. 5). Thus, God’s singling out of humanity is even more amazing and unmerited. The honor of God’s love for us places us just below the ranks of heaven (v. 6). “
“I have heard people claim that they don’t believe in miracles. And yet, they are all around us: the blaze of a rainbow against a dark prairie sky after a thunderstorm of percussive force. The firing of synapses, electric impulses timed just right, as a baby stands upright and toddles her first few steps. The frilled beauty of wildflowers, so easily discounted, but greater in loveliness than Solomon in all his glory.”
“I have watched doctors, nurses, and other staff continuing to do their jobs in the most trying of circumstances. We call them heroes—but too often we call people heroes but then are content to continue to put them in harm’s way.”
“..nurses are often the mainstays of spiritual care at the end of life, more now than ever when family, chaplains, and clergy are usually forbidden to be physically present with the ill. It is their resolute presence and faithfulness that breaks through our own feelings of helplessness and bleakness in the face of this worldwide crisis- fearless even when they lack the protective gear they need.”
“While some have interpreted Jesus as a gate being exclusionary, I am reminded that a gate works both ways. Jesus never excludes, but invites us into deeper fellowship, watching over us and encouraging us with his sheltering hand. As we have remained largely behind closed doors and gates these past many weeks, and for some time in the future, I also pray for those who do not have a door or gate to protect them.”
Long ago, the trees spoke to us,
and we listened,
and treasured their lore and wisdom.
woods and forests are ancient places,
giving life to creatures both great and small,
and many trees live longer than any of us individually.
“Yesterday was Earth Day, centered within what some of us call “Earth Week.” I am lucky to be on retreat right now, listening to bird song and woodpecker drumming and wind. Gratitude for this moment and the greening trees draws my heart closer to God to see wonders in the smallest budding leaf.”
“And that reminds us of our calling. We who are disciples— lay and ordained, doubting as we all are at one time or another—are tasked with carrying that witness out into the world. In last week’s passage from John 20, that was made explicit when Jesus breathed the Holy Spirit upon them, which for us recalls our baptism. We are called to witness to when we have encountered the risen Christ in our midst, or in our hearts.”
“Love roots itself in our very being and transforms us. And we are still in need of that transformation, centuries later. In this time of pandemic, we are called to overcome the fears that might separate us, and instead some into a fuller understanding of our essential unity and interconnectedness.”
“This is precious balm for our souls as we ourselves are facing the surge of this illness. We are all only as healthy as the most ill person among us. This is not only a statement of enlightened self-interest. This is not only a goad for us to return to the ideals of the common good and civic virtue that has been in reality a far-too-elusive goal throughout our history.”