Prayers from the Island Sharing the Island

Sharing the Island

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   I began my walk this morning when a neighbor waved to me.  She is going through a very difficult time; she confessed that her life seems without value and meaning.  As we walked and talked, I could feel her despair and pain.  It would be wonderful to think my words or my company “cured” her, but I know that’s not the case.  The causes of her difficulties, the problems themselves, still exist.  However, I do believe that God can use a simple, random meeting for His good.  What may seem random can be purposeful, intentional in God’s plan.  In an email later that afternoon, my friend talked about our shared time.  She walked on feeling less alone, feeling she had shared pain but experienced a healing, feeling God’s touch upon her, even during a quiet walk.  Each of us is on a walk, O Lord, a walk that sometimes is slowed by pain, by grief, by doubts.  Help us find your chosen companions on these walks, and help us to be just such a companion to others.

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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.

 

Night ComesNight Comes

  At this time of year, night seems to descend on the island differently than elsewhere.  Like a worn quilt, the sky first has only thin places, worn spots that appear to have been rubbed against by giant ankles or elbows, places where the sun shines—barely.  As if suspended, the quilt hangs heavier and heavier, weighted by the stars that begin to pull id down, down, slowly until there is more darkness than light.  Sometimes, dear Lord, I reach for you and find a hole where the fingers of faith quickly connect.  At other times, I reach into something thick and furry, unable to find you, to touch you.  When that happens, I depend upon others to connect me, others to raise my name in prayer, others who lift me and my situation.  Perhaps I break through to you because of old, memorized bible verses or hymns that appear in my mind, illuminating the darkness.  Thank you, Heavenly Father, for the beauty of night but more importantly, thank you for the beauty of your light-filled presence no matter how deep the dark. Amen.

Fiery SeedsFiery Seeds

During last night’s windstorm, pinecones thudded on our roof, disturbing my sleep and making me worry about roof damage.  This morning I picked up the pinecones from the deck, noticing their complexity and beauty.  How densely and tightly packed each seed is positioned in the cone!  I know that many pines only release their seed when fire temperatures are hot enough to burst them open.  It is only in fire that the pines are able to fulfill their destiny and scatter their seed.  I wonder about my own life, those times when I’ve felt closest to God, those times which have taught me important lessons I needed to learn.  Typically, those were crises in my life, times of ill health or surgery, deaths in my family, marriage or family conflicts.  Even during these times of upheaval, God was working with me, teaching me, helping me deepen my relationship with him.  Help me, Lord, to trust you even during the fiery times.  Please keep reminding me that I am not alone in the blazing furnace, but through these flames I am refined and drawn closer to you. Amen.