A Repost From Inward/Outward.org, a daily service of Church of our Saviour in Washington, DC

Absolutely New and Profoundly Disturbing

By Thomas Merton

The greatest temptation that assails Christians is that in effect, for most of us, the Gospel has ceased to be news. And if it is not news it is not Gospel: for the Gospel is the proclamation of something absolutely new, everlastingly new, not a message that was once new but is now two thousand years old…. The message of the Gospel when it was first preached was profoundly disturbing to those who wanted to cling to well-established religious patterns, the ancient and accepted ways, the ways that were not dangerous and which contained no surprises.  (post from 11/06/2012)

Musings for Veteran’s Day

When my oldest child was 6 years old or so,

she asked, “why do people fight in wars?”

I still don’t know how to answer a child….or myself, for that matter.
The costs in human lives are unthinkable.
So many people lose their lives fighting in wars;
others spend time waiting for loved ones to come home from war;
innocent bystanders are killed in war;
soldiers and civilians alike are scarred for life, both physically and emotionally.
Despite my own questions about the “whys” of war…
I give honor today to my Dad, who served in World War II,
to my nephews and niece who have served and are serving our country now.
And for my social media friends around the globe…..
may our on-line community contribute to a more peaceful world.

The Cup Of Our Life: A Guide to Spiritual Growth

By Author Joyce Rupp

Today I have been exploring this book with colleagues in pastoral care.  Using cups dear to us, we have reflected upon the sorrows our cups hold, and then poured them out.  We have made visual expressions of the blessings that have grown from those (or in spite of) sorrows.  And then we filled our cup with symbols of things that clutter our spiritual life and keep our cup too full to receive the fullness of life offered to us.  This book offers a useful guide for reconnecting with one’s spiritual life, whether it’s used in a group or private setting.

“It’s My Birthday And I’ll Cry If I Want To…..”

I have a birthday today. Over 150 friends have wished me well on on Facebook,

I’ve had text messages from my two daughters, cards from my  husband,

cousins and my mother-in-law and some friends,

and a couple of gifts from girlfriends.

So why have I been crying today?

Well, alright, I’ve “grown up”.

Other parents who’ve recently sent their last child off to college or out of the house might know what I mean

I’ve seen this happen to women acquaintances ever since I was in my 20s — when their children leave home, relationships in the family change. That parental role you finally grew into is one you are supposed to “let go of” somehow — it becomes a role that’s undefined and unknown for awhile.

This is my year to feel the entire impact of these changes in our home.  One daughter finished college and got married, and the other graduated high school and moved into her freshman dorm in college. If I have opinions about fashion, purchases or plans, I’m usually dismissed as being clueless (kind of like “round two” of the pre-teen  years).  If I inquire about the details of managing our freshman daughter’s student life, I’m given a noncommital answer.  I really am supposed to be available to hand over money, transport, and then once in awhile say “that’s great, honey!” and “I love you!”   I was not prepared to have such an unreciprocal relationship with my children at this point in life.

I know it will get better.  This is the transition phase, and we are just figuring out how to be adult children and adult parents relatiing to one another.  My prayer is that they will have patience with me, and I will have patience with them.  And that we will remember…. we are still growing as a family.

I wonder what next year’s birthday will be like?

Photo ©ASMcClain