Silence as Worship

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droplets fall unsteady from the branches above
landing heavy on the roof of a small porch below
the fading goodbye from a storm now passed
which bent trees and wind to it’s will
grass blades unbowed as water rolls off their backs
and rise like the dawn that scatters dark cloud filled skies
birds unruffle damp feathers and christen a new day with their calls
bees hum, ants and beetles pitter and patter
a choir of movement and rhythm fills the air

a lone man watches and lets silence be his worship

…written early this morning as I sat outside, quietly drinking coffee, reading/praying the Psalms and reflecting on how often we miss the miracle of nature…

blessings,
@BrianLoging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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Searching for Silence

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Yesterday afternoon I sat on our front porch and read a few Psalms.  When I had finished I closed my eyes, stilled my thoughts and sat quietly. Centering prayer is a discipline which requires very little in the way of doing but can be incredibly difficult; especially when you live in the country, it’s five o’clock and every good ol’ boy with a modified exhaust system is driving down your road.

Finding places of stillness and silence seems to be increasingly more complicated in our loud, obnoxious, “look at me” world. We’ve forgotten how to sit, to breathe, to be alone and touch the One who never leaves us.

blessings,
@BrianLoging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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The Scent of Something New


Last week I ran out of body wash. My brand is generic, housed in an unassuming white bottle with a pale yellow lid, inexpensive and has worked for me for years. Later that day my wife was going to the store and asked me if I needed anything. I mentioned body wash along with a few other items. The next morning, getting ready for work, I hopped in the shower and saw a green monstrosity staring back at me! It was Irish Spring, Moisture Blast, body wash. My first response was confusion and I looked for my usual non-brand behind the viridescent behemoth. I called out to Beth; “Where’s my body wash?!?!” “I got you something new. Just try it.” was her reply. “Sigh.” The old was nowhere to be found and once again change, transition, newness had entered my life without permission.

I picked up the plastic bottle and mocked the name; “Moisture blast?” I chuckled and taunted it with one of my favorite Zen quotes; “The drops of rain make a hole in the stone, not by violence, but by oft falling.” Thankfully no one could hear the exchange over the running water as I popped the top, squeezed the horrid looking blue gunk onto the scrubber and lathered up.

To my surprise the scent was not at all unpleasant and the wash cleaned me up just fine. I even remarked to the Mrs. after getting ready; “Come and smell me! Don’t I smell good?” “You like it?” she asked. “It’s not too bad,” I quipped. She smiled and I’ve enjoyed the scent of change all week-long.

blessings,
@brianloging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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Finding Our Purpose 

  

Someone asked me last night; “How will I know I’ve found my purpose?” I told them; “When what you think, what you say, what you do, who you are, is aligned.”

“How will I know this?” was the next question. “When you stop searching and start serving.” I replied. “Our purpose is never found in pursuit of self but in helping others find their way.”

Today I spotted two turtles, within two miles and two minutes of each other on a busy highway. I have a soft spot for these reptiles because I long to go slower in an all too hectic, fast paced world. I pulled the truck over, flipped on the hazards, picked them up and put them both in a much safer place.

After my reptile rescue I then went to a recovery facility and spoke to a group of about sixty men. I was honest, blunt and supportive. I explained to them that their addiction was a certain road to death for them and heartache for everyone who loved and cared them. I told them their was hope, a better safer way but they had to choose to travel it.

“Our purpose is never found in pursuit of self but in helping others (even turtles?) find their way.”

Blessings,
@BrianLoging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

All that Remains

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Last night I was chatting with some folks about old age and death.  Someone asked the group; “How long do you want to live? Why? What if you had a chronic disease?” People gave various answers but mostly we agreed that quantity of years was trumped by quality. In other words we’d rather have fewer years of good than more years of bad.

However, what we didn’t agree on was what exactly “quality” meant. For some it was good physical health, others strong mental capabilities, there were those who wanted to be be near and a part of their family’s and friends’ lives, or to be useful to someone in some way.

It was an interesting conversation and as I reflected on it today I realized that my life is, most likely, more than half way over. I could die this moment or be blessed with many years to come but I probably have fewer days ahead of me than behind.

My hope is that what I say, what I do, who I am, will make the world a better place and I pray that kindness, grace, love will be all that’s left of me when I leave it.

blessings,
@BrianLoging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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Not Ready!

The bug person, cometh today. I knew they were coming, I had it on my calendar with a reminder set a couple of hours ahead of time to make sure I would be home and have plenty of time to clean up the house, well moderately straighten.

The Mrs. and I like our little farmhouse we’ve lived in for several months now but the limited space, plus all of our stuff, makes it difficult to keep as clean as we’d like. There’s lots of places for dust bunnies to make a nest. With about an hour to go I grabbed a broom and began working my way through the rooms sweeping, picking up, ordering and doing my best to make our abode presentable. I was making good progress with plenty of time to spare. No rush, no fuss, no muss. Except…the doorbell rang, forty five minutes early! ARGH! They pest control woman was early and I wasn’t ready. I swept up a small pile of dirt, took a bag of trash to the kitchen, accepted the fact the house wasn’t going to get any cleaner, smiled and opened the door.

Wisdom tells us that no matter how well we organize, order, plan and seek to control it, life has a way of surprising us. We did not choose to be born, where we’d grow up, what influences shaped our worldview and much of what makes us who we are took shape before we even grasped the concept of choice.

Even now, when we do all we can, to make as much of the time we have, we’re unable to choose when eternity will ring the bell, knock on the door and our time will have run out. To embrace wisdom is to accept the fundamental truth that the end is always closer than we think.

blessings,
@brianloging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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Fly Away

One of the key understandings of working with Incarcerated Fathers is that when you check in to the jail you are on the facility’s timetable.

I have an all day training today beginning mid-morning so I made an early appointment with the local correction’s unit last week. I arrived twenty minutes ahead of time, logged in and waited…for almost forty minutes. I studied my notes, took several deep breaths and tried my best to stay mindful and not let frustration get the best of me.

While I sat there I noticed a lighting bug that had somehow gotten inside. It was flying around, bumping into things, crawling on the floor. Finally it landed near the door that led outside. I put down the notebook I was holding, walked over, opened the door and gently nudged it out. At first it turned around and started to come back inside but I continued to guide it in the other direction and when I could; safely shut the door. The bug paused a moment, recovered its bearings and then flew away.

When I sat back down I thought about the dad I was there to see and the sessions we would work through over the coming months. I hoped he too would be nudged, guided, shown the way to freedom and once given a chance; he would spread new found wings and fly away.

blessings,
@BrianLoging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

 

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