Yesterday morning i decided not to write a journal entry and in the future will take every Sunday morning off both for a change of pace and to focus on another writing project – a series of homilies about Jesus. I was actually going to start yesterday but I never made it for all the right reasons. First, there was a phone call from Sitka, Alaska, my son and his family calling me to catch up – always fun – and to firm up my plans for visiting there in May. I will depart Seattle on Tuesday, May 15 and return on Thursday, May 31, a good couple of weeks. Marsh and Nora, my grandchildren, will be there as well along with Nora’s Swiss friend, Fabio. I’m already smiling in anticipation of the trip.
The second interruption of the morning was equally delightful. My friend, Jim, sent me an email with a short poem, a four liner: Job Opening/ Our loving father did not die/ There never was a God above/ It’s up to us, then, you and I/ To do the daily work of love. Here was my quick, off the cuff, reply, which after looking at it again this morning, am not inclined to change or regret: A short, power-packed poem, Jim. I like it. A wonderful, Sunday morning greeting. It has always been up to us to do”the daily work of love”. Anything that helps rid the modern mind of the concept of a God as a “being” above (or outside) us is to be applauded. When God is seen as creative power, an evolutionary energy within, which gives us the capacity to love and inspires us to enact it, then I think we’re making some headway. There’s a big job out there which seems to be going a’begging. but then I see little acts of grace that abound – like the Food Bank you and Ann work with – and I take courage. Can the existing socio-political systems of power and greed ever be over-ridden by small deeds, the daily work of love? It seems we have to settle for that. It’s where we are and we have to do something in our own little, finite world.
After stopping in LaConner to drop off my blue, ceramic duck filled with a houseplant to my friend and young mother, Margo, housebound with a sick child, and then driving up the hill a little farther to pick-up a friend’s daughter who needed a lift to church, I made it to the worship service with only minutes to spare, Once in the nave, the pastor motioned for me to join her by the altar table. I was to open the morning service to help the pastor preserve her voice for later. I was supposed to have been informed in advance but wasn’t which was okay. The sermon was on resurrection stories: She had several from the Bible. One story that wasn’t, had to do with the man who inadvertently ran over a rabbit, one of God’s innocent creatures, with his car. He was upset and was standing by the side of the road distraught and in tears. A woman stopped her car, got out to find out if she could help. When she saw what had happened, she reassured him that it was fixable, went back to her car, grabbed a spray can and started spraying the dead rabbit. Sure enough, the rabbit rose up and hopped down the road, stopping several times to turn around and wave its paw. The man was amazed. What was in that can?, he wanted to know. She showed him. The label read : “Get Rid of Dead Hare… Just spray and bring damaged hare back to life”.
After the service, I became involved in several extended conversations. The two older women were doing okay. Both live alone but have children who check in with them on a regular basis. One said her daughter keeps urging her to find a male companion, She keeps telling her daughter, she would like a companion but only between the hours of 4:00 PM and 7:00 PM. What do I want? More than that. After a small bite to eat with my former neighbors, Jan and her mother, Sue, I grabbed a few groceries and headed home to prepare the night’s fare for my old friends, Judy, Michael and Janet. The Chicken Piccata was a hit. I’ll do that again. – flattened chicken breasts in sauce with onions, capers and wine. I also made “dinner muffins” using my breakfast muffin recipe but with different spices such as onion, basil and pepper. A good conversation into the night. Judy challenged me to think again about how much energy I want to expend thinking about the next move, urging me to let it unfold on its own. She’s right. I am doing too much preplanning, moving beyond gathering options, and not living more in moment, not trusting the Universe (I like this neutral term) to work it out.