Contemplation, Contemplative Practices, Creativity, Paying Attention, Prayer, spiritual direction

“I’m Painting! I’m Painting!” and Learning to Pray through Play

“Man only plays when he is in the fullest sense of the word a human being, and he is only fully a human being when he plays.” ~ Friedrich Schiller Do you ever have "I'm sailing!" moments? You know, like from the movie What About Bob? when Bill Murray is tied to the sail boat… Continue reading “I’m Painting! I’m Painting!” and Learning to Pray through Play

Contemplation, Contemplative Practices, Everyday Grace, Paying Attention, Prayer

Walking with your Eyes and Heart Wide Open

“Creation itself is a sacred text through which the presence of God is revealed to us.” –Christine Valters Paintner Last weekend, I hiked with my family through a gorgeous piece of woods in a state park close to home. The trees were green with young leaves. Warm sunlight illuminated young ferns and a myriad of… Continue reading Walking with your Eyes and Heart Wide Open

Contemplation, Contemplative Practices, Paying Attention

Dare to Be Slow

"The self has become anxious for what the next instant might bring. This greed for destination obliterates the journey." --John O'Donohue "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." ~ Ferris Bueller Does hurry infect your life like it does mine? Hurry is hard… Continue reading Dare to Be Slow

Contemplation, Contemplative Practices, Paying Attention, spiritual direction, Words

How to Clear Space

"In the spiritual life, the word 'discipline' means 'the effort to create some space in which God can act.' Discipline means to prevent everything in your life from being filled up."  --Henri Nouwen "So what is your dream job?" Before my inner-censor kicked in, I blurted out: "I would like to work at a monastery for half the… Continue reading How to Clear Space

Becoming, Contemplation, Contemplative Practices, Image of God, Listening, Paying Attention

What if There’s Something Much Better than Living for God?

I used to desperately try to live for God. And for most of my grown-up life, I felt like I was letting God down. When you grow up Baptist with a strong earnest streak and a deep spiritual hunger, you cannot help but try to live your life for God. You will read books, hear… Continue reading What if There’s Something Much Better than Living for God?

Contemplation, Contemplative Practices, Listening, Paying Attention, The Gift of Writing, writing

What to Do When Your Heart Doesn’t Know What it Wants

Image from The Gift of Writing I'm learning how to listen to my heart.  What does it sound like?  Where does it show up?  Ego, Intellect, Fear, Should . . . these parts of me are noisy.  Sometimes they distract me from who I am and where I am going. When I forget, when I… Continue reading What to Do When Your Heart Doesn’t Know What it Wants

Compassion, Contemplation, Listening, Paying Attention

Listening to Tears

Tears have always made me uncomfortable. Especially my own.  Signs of weakness or weirdness depending upon the situation.  Brush them away.  Hold them back.  I've hated the feeling of not being in control--of my heart, mind, or emotions.  And these sneaky, salty drops escaping from my eyes are tell-tale giveaways.  They won't be stopped.  This… Continue reading Listening to Tears

Contemplation, Discernment, Listening, Paying Attention, Questions, Silence

Can You Hear Who Your Heart Longs to Be?

Sometimes life gets too busy and too noisy to hear the inner workings of our hearts.  We don't pay attention.  Maybe we have forgotten how. Lost happens when we don't know how to listen. I think my invitation to Quiet has been like a long time out.  The kind I sometimes give to my children,… Continue reading Can You Hear Who Your Heart Longs to Be?