An Exercise in Seeing the Many Splendored Things

Eight days ago I posted the poem, "The Kingdom of God in No Strange Land."

It was based on a praxis assignment for the Renovaré Institute where we were, like the poet, to see "Jacob's Ladder" running from heaven to our everyday life. I have loved it. I wrote my praxis answer more than a week ago, and there have been so many sightings of Jacob's Ladder since then. But I am going to post what I wrote. It will be nice to have it here. God continues to shine His Kingdom right where I am. 

"'Tis ye, 'tis your estranged faces, 

That miss the many-splendored thing."

These lines intrigued me. I have long believed that God is constantly trying to capture our attention, and it is because we are "estranged" that we miss "the many-splendored thing" He is trying to reveal to us. 

Ever since I read The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence in my 20's, and I was crying while walking back on a cold, winter's evening at…

I Want So to Belong

O God, I want so to belong;
teach me to accept.
I want to be close;
teach me to reach out.
I want a place where I am welcome;
teach me to open my arms.
I want mercy;
teach me to forgive.
I want beauty;
teach me honesty.
I want peace;
show me the eye of the storm.
I want truth;
show me the way to question
my unquestionable convictions.
I want joy;
show me the way of deeper commitment.
I want life;
show me how to die.
Loder, Ted Guerillas of Grace (San Diego, CA: LuraMedia, 1984) p.72.

Prayerful Review of My Week

I have being doing the Examen prayer with George verbally since Wednesday (because he has been sick so he has been working remotely - yay). But I am going to journal about some things. :)

I don't have to be to work until 9:15, and I have already done my attendance from last week (usually I wait until the last minute and do it right before I go to teach the next class but got smart and did it last Wednesday). So, I am going to spend some extended journaling time. 

By the way, here is a handout I developed for the Examen based on Trevor Hudson's adaptations and from reading A Simple Life-Changing Prayer by Jim Manney:

Things I am grateful for:
George being home more
Peace in our home
Who He made me to be (more about that in the life-giving section)
The 34 Week Online Retreat for Everyday Life from Creighton University! (
Friends wh…

God's Intense Desire

“God has an intense desire to help us achieve the end for which God lovingly created us.”

Online Retreat Week 3 Context for the quote above:
Let’s let the background of this whole week be two wonderful imaginative reflections: To simply walk around, doing all that I do each day, more and more conscious of why I was created: To give praise to God.
To revere God: to grow in awe and love for God.
To be of service: in God’s service. To  notice the rest of creation more consciously, and how all that I notice is intended by God to help me — it is all created for me.Again, this is about gratitude. We want to appreciate, to become more sensitive to and more aware of something about God: God has an intense desire to help us achieve the end for which God lovingly created us. So, by our thinking and watching this week we are coming to know God better.

Ignatian Retreat Week For Everyday Life Weeks 1 & 2

I love these exercises! I realize how important the "Life Experiences" section of SHAPE is, and how I have not been able to do it in TOAG over the last few years due to time. Reviewing this has been so good. I remembered more and more things from my early years this time around. 

These are a few random things from the direction for Week 1:

Let this be the image: This week, let’s go through the photo album of our life. Let’s go back to our earliest memories. Let’s let the Lord show us our lives. What pictures are there? With each part of my life, what scenes do I remember? Who is in those scenes? Some photos will be of happy times, some will be quite sad, others will be difficult to recollect at all. They all constitute our story and the journey that has brought us to where we begin this retreat.
Take it easy. Go slowly. Take a little bit each day. Being faithful to this exercise will help tremendously to prepare for the weeks ahead. Write do…

The Kingdom of God in No Strange Land

This is about finding God in everyday life. Francis Thompson wrote this while a homeless drug addict in London. Meditate on this. What do you think?

In No Strange Land by Francis Thompson

O world invisible, we view thee,
O world intangible, we touch thee,
O world unknowable, we know thee,
Inapprehensible, we clutch thee!

Does the fish soar to find the ocean,
The eagle plunge to find the air—
That we ask of the stars in motion
If they have rumour of thee there?

Not where the wheeling systems darken,
And our benumbed conceiving soars!—
The drift of pinions, would we hearken,
Beats at our own clay-shuttered doors.

The angels keep their ancient places;—
Turn but a stone and start a wing!
’Tis ye, ’tis your estranged faces,
That miss the many-splendoured thing.

But (when so sad thou canst not sadder)
Cry;—and upon thy so sore loss
Shall shine the traffic of Jacob’s ladder
Pitched betwixt Heaven and Charing Cross.

Yea, in the night, my Soul, my daughter,

It is Well - Sunday Morning Fifteen Minute Freewrite

What a great week. It was full, but I had many days of rest and sustaining sprinkled throughout the week.

It was especially full on Saturday. I was a little leery about how busy it would be, but I allowed for time in my schedule today SABBATH REST (the Cycle of Grace Sustaining after a Cycle of Grace Significance/Fruitful time).

Of course it started with time with God, Morning Affirmations and Stretch (M.A.S.S.), and a prayerful review of my previous day with GEORGE. Sometimes I write it on this blog, but most days, I just pray, and I love it when George is home to do it with him.  Thank you, Fran, for doing it with your husband and giving me the idea to do it with mine!

Then I took a Face to Face Prayer Walk before an important leader in an influential church came to visit. God spoke to me MANY years ago about this church, and I have been praying into this for that long.  It has been so wonderful to see God speak and act, and this was the culmination as God spoke to this leader to come…