Reflecting on Between….

pooh-corner-by-david-buckwalterI am spending a lot of time in between. I find myself caught between anger and reconciliation, thought and action, solitude and togetherness. The world baffles and confuses me, and I find myself at odds with what I thought I knew for certain and the inconceivable. Over the years I have sought out time to pause and reflect, at first in concentrated blocks at retreats, now in my daily routine. I start my day in quiet reflection, listening rather than talking to God. There are days when I can simply drop into silence and peace. Other days I struggle, emptying my mind of one worry after another only to find two crop up in their place. At times like these, my little prayer corner is simply not enough. I cannot quiet my mind while my body remains still. So I walk and pray, looking for God to speak to me through creation. At first I mumble and even curse, railing at God to sweep away what plagues me. I may not even lift my head to look around. My pace is fast and my mind remains frenzied. Then I come upon a bend in the road that forces me to look up. Standing in the rough, my eyes behold the glory of our world. My mind grows still, my heart softens and my soul is revived. If I pause long enough, God’s grace sweeps through me. There may not be any insights or solutions, but there is a renewed sense of hope and all encompassing love. The between time may be holding open space for God’s grace, allowing the Holy Spirit to craft a better solution than any human mind can conceive. Make time today to walk with God, listening for your place in the kingdom rather than simply listing your wants and needs in this broken world. Breathe out your burdens, breathe in God’s grace. Let God work through you in His time, not yours. Most of all, trust that the Holy Spirit fills the hearts of each and every one of us, regardless of our frailty, or perhaps because of it. Text by Connie Chintall©2016, Photo entitled ‘Pooh Corner’ by David Buckwalter©2016, All Rights Reserved. To see more of David’s work, go to http://www.buckwalterphotographyva.com/

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Reflecting on Continuity….

Leaves are raining down against a slate grey horizon this morning. If clear skies weren’t forecasted for this evening, I would wonder if snow was on the way. It seems our autumn weather will be very short lived this year. So I was drawn to this beautiful drawing entitled ‘Sea Urchins Exploring the Cosmos’ by a new friend Jeanne. The background color eerily matches the morning sky. I love the bold sea urchins, placed in the stars rather than the water. I am an engineer by training and profession, spending many years working on satellite systems. Like most engineers of my generation, I was transfixed by the days of early space exploration, and especially the Apollo missions to the moon. What really struck me about this drawing was how the sea urchins resemble the earliest satellites. Perhaps the engineers chose a globe shape to echo the planets, extending antennas in all directions once the satellite was deployed. Like the sea urchins, these satellites found their way using long spines, reaching out to learn about their surroundings. While Jeanne’s imagination may seem a stretch to some, this engineer finds comfort in the continuity between art and science. We cannot build what we cannot imagine. Take time today to open your mind to new ideas and seek out creative expression. Allow the Author of Creation to inspire and empower you, using nature as a blueprint to shoot for the stars. Let go of what is and embrace what can be. And remember all it takes to reach out, like the sea urchin, is one spine at a time. Art by Jeanne Mischo

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