Prayers from the Island Free for All!

Free for All!

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  How quickly the thirsty sand has soaked up the rain from last night’s storm!  I worry about the thimbleberries since they need abundant water in order to develop their fruit.  I don’t need fresh thimbleberries; however, I’m most delighted that they are free, ready for the picking.  No price per pound, no checkout, no scan code.  I simply pick them, wash and sort, and they’re ready for me to eat or cook. Thimbleberries are a gift of the island, available to anyone who takes a pan for the picking.  How like God’s salvation they are!  Free for all!  There for the taking!  All that’s necessary is to go to God’s word with a believing heart and accept the gift—pick the berries and be nourished.  I thank you God for this gift and for the free salvation you offer to all of us. Amen.

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Bare FeetBare Feet

 Should I wear shoes or not?  That’s the question I ask myself when I reach the end of the boardwalk.  Today the sun was warm; I wanted to walk barefoot, wanted to feel the waves lap against my toes.  But, I decided my feet were still tender and I’d be better off wearing shoes.  I stepped closer and closer to water’s edge, telling myself I could jump back in time—no problem.  But—I was mistaken.  A wave came from nowhere and washed over my shoe, soaking it.  Now the leather will shrink and I’ll need to stretch the shoe to make it comfortable.  Sometimes I think I can skirt temptation in exactly the same way, come just close enough to enjoy its thrill, but jump back before I’m ‘soaked’.  My confidence, like my shoe, is wet and shrinking, uncomfortable.  Thank you, Lord, for this reminder.  I must make a deliberate effort to avoid waves of gossip, hurtful behavior, and mean words, not trusting myself to resist the allure, not letting them wash over, soaking me.  Forgive me when I lead myself into temptation and have mercy on me. Amen.

Sand EverywhereSand Everywhere

Sand!  There is sand everywhere in my house!  When I walk on the beach wearing shoes and socks, the sand finds its way to my bare feet, nestles between my toes, and sticks to my ankles.  If I’m barefooted, I try to wash off the sand before entering the house, but the stairs have their own sandy coating, so I replace one layer of sand with another.   My carpet sometimes looks pale beige, so evenly does a sand layer coat it.  I’m reminded of the Psalmist who found God everywhere he looked—in the deepest chasm or the highest clouds.  I can better appreciate that sense of omnipresence when I think of sand—blowing, filming adhering, and surrounding me–inescapable.  I thank you, Lord for your ability to penetrate my life at every level—wherever I look and touch, you are there. Amen.


Spring’s ScentSpring’s Scent

 As I walked down my driveway this morning to collect the newspaper, I could smell the scent of spring.  I can’t identify precisely the source of this scent;  perhaps it’s the new shoots on my hibiscus, the buds on the cacti, or the faint green leaves on the bougainvillea.  Whatever the origin, the smell is rich and heady, almost tangible in its impact.  We take island odors so much for granted—the salt spray of the beach, the sun on hot pine needles, the sea-smell of crushed shells, the iodine scent of seaweed heaped on the shoreline.  I forget, Lord, to thank you for the gifts of our senses, those avenues to perception that help us love one another and the world around us.  Today I thank you that I can breathe in proof of your goodness and love, a rich aroma demonstrating your generosity, the beauty you routinely extend to us.  Thank you, Lord. Amen.