Friday, October 12, 2007


I don’t know if I know how to tell this, but I need to. It's a matter both of remembering for myself, and of obedience.

I met last night with my quasi-pre-discernment prayer group (a form of discernment, in itself). I’d had a mocha frappuccino earlier—not because I needed it, but because I really like them. I was uber-caffeinated, but I’m not sure how much of a part that plays in this.

We checked in, and talked a little bit about where the group is going. Then we got quiet. We sat in silence for about half an hour… and it was a wild ride. I had a deep, strong sense of joy and adventure, openness and sureness at the same time. I kept trying to clear my head of that, so I could listen without my own words—but it wasn’t going anywhere. I kept putting words in God’s mouth in my head, and I knew it. I started thinking about how to focus, how to listen… and I remembered a practice I used to do during Lent. I used to keep a prayer journal, kind of a dialogue between God and me. I would write out everything and get it out of me, then it was easier to listen.

As soon as I lit on that, I felt—physically—a hand around my heart. It wasn’t in any way gory or forceful—it was definitely firm. I tried to breathe through it, to see if I’d simply gotten overly tense. No. And the sense I got was, “You are so. much. mine.” I calmed immediately, and I just sat with that until the bell rang.

I told the group of this experience, and a little bit of where I’ve been the past week or so. We were talking about courage and strength. Someone said something I can’t quite remember—but it’s synonymous with what I’ve believed about myself up to now, “I am as strong as I need to be.” I answered him, “No. For me right now—you are as strong as you’re open to becoming.”

As I said that, there was no fear in me.

We also talked about what the phrase “in the name of” means; someone said she felt I was under God’s presence and protection. I don’t feel protected, in the sense of sheltered, at all. I feel both vulnerable and safe. Deeply, strongly sure that whatever I end up doing—whatever I do in my daily life—God is there, for God’s good purpose.

I called the Apostle in Exile when I got home, to tell her I’d had a God-quake that I couldn’t really talk about yet. She’s been up with me, and my fears, until two in the morning, more times than I can count—though we haven’t had to do it in awhile. I told her, “I don’t think I’ll ever get that kind of scared again.” I was, and am, serious. That's done.

I have finally had enough love, enough faith, enough—being open to grace, I guess—to recognize, and celebrate, all of this. I’m healing—but not just for me. I’m healing, so I can bear witness to God’s light in the world—and so I can reflect it. I could not have preached what I preached last week, had I not had those experiences. God is transformation—and you can’t witness to that unless you’ve known it.

Today after class, I need to walk down to Elephant and get a small sketchbook. My old paper journals are 9x12; I need something I can carry around with me. If I make a habit of prayer-journaling when I wake up and when I go to bed, I’ll put a serious dent in my ‘net addiction, too.

All I want to do is listen, and live.

Blessed be the name of our God.


Mimi said...

Wow! What an amazing experience!

Apostle In Exile said...

"I’m healing, so I can bear witness to God’s light in the world—and so I can reflect it."

Yeah. And yay!

juniper68 said...


Kirstin said...

It really was. And is.

Thank you, everybody!