I am feeling tired but grateful this morning. Yesterday was a long, full, and ultimately grace-filled day. But it got off to a rocky start. The sermon hit the printer at 8 a.m. After several abortive attempts on Saturday, I finally gave up and went to bed, setting the alarm for six, hoping that sleep would bring inspiration. Night did not bring rest but tossing, turning and a headache, and an alarm that came all too soon. But six a.m. did find me dutifully ensconced at the laptop putting together something that I hoped spoke to someone besides me. At eight it printed. By eight-ten I was in tears, completely overwhelmed by the thought of the day before me. But some nurturing from the Dear One, a cup of strong coffee and a gentle but firm talk with myself headed off the incipient panic and got me dressed and to church. I had a sense that once there it would be ok. Routine, role and God’s good grace would take me where I needed to go. And it was true. I was able to slip into the stream of celebrating and preaching and let it carry me as it always does, to be fully present, joyful and at peace in a way that only happens in that space and time.
After service and a sustaining soup and bread lunch we had an afternoon of training for lay ministries in which we gained an acolyte, lectors, worship leaders, Eucharistic ministers and people for altar guild. Some of the people who are taking on lay ministries are new to our congregation, others are long-time members who are discerning new roles for themselves in this community. It feels like another way the Spirit is at work among us. It feels like much-needed hope. It was a good afternoon together.
Then it was off to jail for me for our turn in the rotation for the ministerium. I had but one taker, but oh, how he needed to be there. We prayed and read a bit of scripture but mostly I sat and was present while he talked and cried. He is, I think, all of maybe twenty one or two, and he tells me he has been “locked up” fourteen years of his life. He tells me he has siblings whose names he does not know, a son he has not seen but loves and wants to be a father to, a mother he has been hurt by and a father he has only seen once but is not sure he can forgive. He’s not sure he can forgive himself either. Forgiveness. We talked about that. How God has already done that for him. How he might be able to forgive himself as well. I prayed for that for him. I will continue to do so.
Yoga class was the final destination of the day. Body prayer on a mat. Peace and quiet, and the miracle that I did not fall asleep in savasana but rather was able to rest in gratitude for the grace of being here, in this place that God has called me, for God’s strength that carries me when I cannot do so for myself, for the love and prayers that bear me up from all of those who support me every day. So many blessings…….thanks be to God.