Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Some snippets from life this week:

* My daughter (4 year-old) is sitting in a patch of sunlight on my bedroom floor. She is looking at objects that she calls "treasures" and I call "sacred objects." We used to have an altar where we put things from nature or anything else that helped us feel close to God or anything else... But the altar shelf fell out of the wall and the objects have since been in a little box in my closet. But she recently rediscovered them and I blissfully hid in the hallway listening to her squeaky voice moan a song. She was making it up and it was a prayer..."Maaaaaary, Jeeeeeesus, Mary was saaaad when Jesus died, Gooooooood, etc etc, other unitelligible moanings." Sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo precious.

* I've been so relieved about my interview being over, that I haven't been that ruffled by the fact that we're moving in 10 days and my in-laws are arriving tonight and staying for a week and I'm hosting a Thanksgiving dinner for 13 on Thursday.

* I've been playing a game with my daughters that has proven to be a wonderful spriritual practice for all of us. When we have an hour during the day, I let one of them be the navigator. We just drive and at each intersection, she gets to say "Turn Left" or "Go Straight"...and we go slowly and it's amazing where we end up. I've discovered parts of our city I never knew existed. And the BEST part is we ALWAYS happen upon something magical and serendipitous...it's crazy. We just happen to find this gorgeous park , hidden in a neighborhood. And whenever we find the special place, we get out and explore. It's so amazing where my little girls ' intuition or sense of adventure take us!!!!! I will keep doing this for a while. Learning many good lessons.

Grateful for health and for home, for food and for family. For the mountains and for the ocean. Amen

Thursday, November 12, 2009

It's over!!!!!!!!!!! for now.....

Well, I met with the bishop today. Thanks be to God, it's is OVER. And it was no big deal. Well, it was a huge deal, but it was mercifully short and I was completely myself. It went well. He had intentionally not read my file, so I was making a true first impression. No pressure!! (ha ha) but it was good and I am filled with relief. For now.

Just had to share.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

deep breaths

Well...I haven't blogged all summer. It really was a great summer. Lots of traveling and family time. And of course Iona being a huge highlight...a beautiful, peaceful place indeed. So here I am...discernment committee done as of March, report finally written, and I have an official date to interview with the bishop. And I am so overcome with anxiety that I am, yes it's true, wearing a holter monitor on my body right now!! jeez, I can't believe it. Now, I've always been a bit of a hypochondriac. I often suspect something's physically wrong with me when I'm perfectly healthy. So this latest manifestation is that I think something is wrong with my heart. Of course, nothing is wrong with my heart. But I get so worked up and have been having anxiety attacks. Now, it's not all about meeting with the bishop There are many things going on in my life that can contribute to this recent bout of anxiety. We are moving houses in November. I'm very excited about this, but moving is moving. We're also back to the fall schedule and my husband is gone a lot and is very busy. I also flew in a lot of airplanes this summer and it just makes me tense. So I know it can all add up sometimes. Not to mention this crazy world and I can't bear to watch the news right now. I just seem to be letting the world in and it's stirring me up more than usual. So that's what's going on. Once I have the official news from the doctor that I'm fine, I know some of this anxiety will abate. Cause I've gotten in a cycle of worry right now and that info will break the cycle. But I still have this ol' bishop interview looming. He's just a person. But I've been putting this off for so long that the thought of finally going for it has me in a complete tizzy. Luckily, God has surrounded me with support. And I feel it and am so grateful. But still not sure how I'm going to be able to drive all the way there and actually stay somewhat composed in front of his huge presence and intensity. So. I'm showing up. I'm going to go. God will be with me. And that has to be enough. It is. Just got to get it over with.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Preaching Done, Packing Begun

Phew! I'm swimming in a sea of relief and it feels wonderful. I preached my first sermon Sunday. What a day. It went great! What courage it takes to step up to that pulpit and offer a homily. I appreciate the work so many of you do so regularly! But it was a great experience and I feel good about it and glad it's over! I felt so supported in prayer, so thank you to those of you who were praying. I have sensed the Spirit with me lately and I will continue to lean into her and trust her.

I leave for England tomorow! Prayers for safe travel. I'm a nervous flyer, especially on those nighttime trans-Atlantic flights and I'll have my little ones with me without husband.

Then to Iona in a few weeks!

I feel blessed to be part of this community. Your words are a constant companion.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Deja Vu

We are evacuated for the second time this year due to wildfire. It is surreal. It was surreal the first time, but re-living it is somewhat worse. Although we are under mandatory evacuation, I'm not that worried about our home. I'm worried about a community that was just healing from the November fire. It's just too soon and we're not ready for this trauma upon a trauma. My heart goes out to this city...to all the people (30,000) who are displaced. Everything has been cancelled, on hold, and yet some things continue...very bizarre. We're in a hotel and the girls are having fun...too young to really get the impact of what's going on. We watch a little news and they've seen images, but they feel safe. Plus they get to stay up late and watch Sesame Street in the morning and hang out by the pool. There was a benefit scheduled tonight to raise money for a beloved monastic community that lost their home in the last fire. The irony is deep and all around. I'm trying to stay positive. I just hate not being able to go home. I'm trying to think of it as a forced vacation, but it's hard. I know all will be well. But we just had our house painted on the inside to get the smoke smell out from the last fire. Hmmm...maybe it's time to move from this beautiful place that is just too fire prone.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

It was Love that wrote this play

Snippets from my Sunday morning:

- puppy barking at something invisible outside.
- girls on the floor behind me playing with their toy jewelry.
- husband sleeping in.

Sounds pretty peaceful. And it is. But I've been so anxious lately. Like the air around me that I breathe in is full of static anxiety. Sometimes I get this way. Maybe it's just that I'm breathing in the collective anxiety that is so pervasive in the media...our world is in fear and anxiety. It's hard to not let it get to you. But the thing is, most of my moments are not anxious at all. If only I could live more in the moment. It's so easy, really! ;)

A few nights ago I took Husband on a date to hear David Wilcox sing live in a nearby town. He's one of my favorites. And he's completely different live. It's his gift. He doesn't just get up there and sing songs....he PRESIDES. Seriously. It's his priesthood. He is completely connected to God through his guitar and through his music and he bravely and vulnerably opens himself up to that Spirit, and it overflows onto us, the audience. It was healing. And I needed it! I've been walking around my days with my ipod listening to his music and using it like a talisman against this anxious air. There's one song, in particular, that made me weep as I listened. I'll post the lyrics which will fall short without the music...not at all the same, but nonetheless, here they are:

You say you see no hope,
you say you see no reason we should dream,
that the world would ever change.
You’re saying love is foolish to believe
‘cause there’ll always be some crazy
with an army or a knife
to wake you from your day dream,
put the fear back in your life…

Look, if someone wrote a play
just to glorify what’s stronger than hate,
would they not arrange the stage
to look as if the hero came too late?
He’s almost in defeat,
it’s looking like the evil side will win,
so on the edge of every seat,
from the moment that the whole thing begins,

It is Love who mixed the mortar
and it’s Love who stacked these stones
and it’s Love who made the stage here
although it looks like we’re alone
in this scene set in shadows
like the night is here to stay
there is evil cast around us
but it’s love that wrote the play…
For in this darkness Love can show the way

So now the stage is set.
You feel you own heart beating in your chest.
This life’s not over yet.
And so we get up on our feet and do our best.
We play against the fear.
We play against the reasons not to try
We’re playing for the tears burning in the happy angel’s eyes

For it's Love that mixed the mortar...etc.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Ready to be Ready

The title says it all. I'm tired of discerning. I'm tired of being wishy washy. It's just my personality to never stop weighing all sides...at some point ya just need to take a step. So my discernment committee is done (recently), they're writing their report and I'm taking the next step towards the diocese. It's right. I think I'm just afraid. And I need to do it anyway. I feel good about it. And worse case scenario is painful, but survivable, ya know? I don't plan to begin seminary for at least a year and a half, maybe two and a half, cause of the age of my youngest.

I'm preaching in a few weeks for the first time. Anxious about it. But again, it's a good step and one that just needs to happen. when a door opens, you just have to say yes. But YIKES. I feel this pressure since everyone knows I plan to get ordained. And I know it's not about me. It's about the spirit and the scripture and the moment but still.....kinda terrifying.

My husband is traveling for 3 weeks soon to do some teaching and I'll be home with the girls. Then we'll join him for 21/2 weeks. Then he flies home and I get to go to Iona in Scotland with my best friend. Woooooooo hoooooooooo. I don't really believe this is going to happen. But apparently it is.

I have met recently some role models of mothers with young children being priests. It is inspiring. And I don't feel so alone and confused.

I'm going to be B R A V E.

Other than that, life is good. Puppy is good, though I've been lazy training her. I need to prioritize this cause I want a good doggie! And I enjoy her so much more when she's behaving herself. She's almost 5 months now.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

heavenly music

I just returned from a wonderful choral concert. When I was first invited, I wasn't that excited to go. I have memories of being pretty bored in too long choral concerts. But this was a good reminder of how wonderful it can be. It didn't hurt that we were up front and very close to the orchestra and the singers. It was Mozart's Requiem in the first half, but it was the second half that I really loved. Have any of you heard of Lauridsen's "Lux Aeterna"? Beautiful beautiful contemporary requiem. Truly heart movingly gorgeous. It was interesting to note the differences in tone of the two musical pieces. Mozart's piece is full of fear...Lord save me from the fires of hell. Eternal damnation. Please please have mercy on me. But Lauridsen's focuses on the miracle of the Light of Christ coming to the world. Of the beautiful mercy and hope. Very interesting.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Jesus silhouette

Wow. My last post was December 14th, 2008, and even that one was after spotty blogging. I'm not sure why I am so resistant lately to blogging. Not sure.

This has been quite a time. And yet, from the outside, life has continued as usual. My daughters continue to grow in beautiful ways; I go about my daily tasks as always...but it has been a deep time of discernment. And in thinking back with the calendar, I am dumbfounded that I have been in "discernment" for years now. Sometimes I think if it takes me this long to discern a call, then it's not a call. But on the other hand, it's just taking me time. It's like I have to shed some layers and grow some new ones before I can take the next step. My committee has stuck with me all along.

The latest conversation we had was the age-old "process" question of what do you need to DO that you can't DO unless your ordained. This way of phrasing the question is impossible for me to answer. Because my sense of call to the priesthood is much more about personhood...about BEING a priest more than DOING priestly duties. Of course, I am drawn to the priestly duties, yes, but this is not my way of expressing the call. But people seem to harp on this.

I've also been in therapy and it's been uncomfortable but good. I think. It is very hard for me to be real and not self-conscious in the room with her. I know this is normal, but it is squirmy time.

But I've been doing a lot more work in my particular church and it's been wonderful! Full of joy and challenge and creativity. But it's not enough. I have the opportunity of preaching on pentecost and I think I have to say yes, but SCARY!!!!!!!!!! I know it's not about me. Most certainly not. But when everyone knows I'm discerning a call to the priesthood, it's hard to just do the job up there and not try to come across "well."

We are still in the aftermath of the november fire, but all is fine. Just still dealing with insurance companies and an inept dry cleaning company that lost a lot of our things. But they're just things.

I miss reading the blogs of others and I look forward to doing that again. I'm going to try.

We just had a wonderful intergenerational beginning of Lent. We were tired of the separation of "adult ed" and the "children ministries" so we combined them. It was a big experiment...will the children be bored? distracting? distracted? Will the adults be engaged? Will anyone show up who isn't a parent. and it worked! We played around with the parables, acting them out in different ways...improvisationally on stage, in small groups of threes....it was just great. And we had a huge silhouette of Jesus up at the front where people were invited to place post-its with questions. There were no answers given, of course. But the community posted there questions on the silhouette of Jesus and then we broke bread. That's church, isn't it?