Thursday, 27 September 2018

Tend Your Life

Take a moment to be still.Calm your thoughts.
Look innerly toward God.
Ask the Holy Spirit to come and be with you, to transform your life, this day and always
Feel the Father holding you gently, encouraging you to open to His Loving presence.
See the face of Christ before you, looking at you with such compassion.
And share with them all, in whichever way you can, whatever burdens you are carrying, right now, however small or large or seemingly impossibly huge.

Stop and give yourself the space to do that.
If you feel that you need forgiveness, ask.
If you feel that you need comfort, it will be given.
If you feel you need help, name it.
If you feel you need love, open and receive it.
If you feel you need healing, claim it.
Know that the awesome Power of the Trinity is with you and will help you.
Each one brings a unique gift to you.
They will hold you in the Very Heart of Love where all mercy flows and love is complete.
They will see your need, even if you cannot articulate it fully and they will respond with power and grace.
They will hear and see you.
The Spirit will rest upon you and we ask that you feel that loving energy in a gentle tender way, today, right now.
Feel your burdens touched by love as you move through this day.
Remember the Heart of Love is real and ever present, waiting to come to your aid.
Only ask then wait.
Somehow love will touch you.
May your day be blessed.
Amen
Father hear me
Son see me
Spirit guide me
Thank you!
Amen

Holy Tears

The wonderful teacher Anthony de Mello once told a story about a grieving mother, who had just lost her son. The master told her gently that he could not do anything about her loss, but he could make her tears “holy”.
That beautiful, tender story reminds me of what we have learned about suffering and struggle, grief and loss, about being broken open in the bleakest places, way beyond imagination.
Here we have immersed ourselves in the Heart of love that flows from the Mighty Trinity. We call this path the Holy Way.
The Holy Way is a path of love, ours and God’s….
The Holy Way has renewed us as we have clung on to that love.
The Holy Way is a path with heart and soul.
It commits us us to keep remembering who we are and who God is, to see beyond the world, with all its torments, disillusions, displacements, hurts, losses.
It commits us to see with inner eyes the flow of Spirit, guiding, empowering, enabling, hoping, holding, uplifting, recreating, banishing all evil in its path, miraculously helping us tread another step forward, even when no steps are seemingly possible.
It is a path of faith.
It is a path of light.
It enables us to cling on to a belief in goodness, in love, in a tenderness and compassion that surely touches the deepest tragedy, the severest pain, the worst assault, the cruelest betrayals and brings healing.
It helps you hold on and move toward love, even when that love is unfelt, unreachable, separated, seemingly lost.
Even in the darkest place does not God tell us that darkness will be to Him as light as day( Psalm 139;12) ?
There is no place that the Light of the World cannot shine, it is in this knowledge that we place our faith as we journey on our Holy Way.
It is in this way that we find blessings in all we experience and endure.
It is in this way, immersing our tears in the love of the Trinity, where all sadness is known, understood and touched by Spirit, that we can keep moving on, refinding ourselves and carry on reaching out in love once more.
Tears ultimately are for healing. When God touches us with His light all is transfigured and transformation is possible and can be used for good.
How many tears must Jesus’ mother have wept for her Son on the Cross, yet what power and love were released that day.
MARY WEEPING AT THE CROSS
may your tears heal the earth
may your tears touch our hearts
may your tears cleanse our soul
may your grief heal our grief
may your grief touch our emptiness
may your grief speak for us
may your love heal our fear
may your love touch our pain
may your love bless our lives
may your hope heal our hearts
may your hope touch our souls
may your hope guide us on
to your Son
(Linda Crowhurst)

Hold On To Truth

Recently  I wrote in my journal about how overwhelmed I felt.
In our situation, one of grinding immense, ongoing, devastating suffering, every extra stress is an intolerable burden.
I feared I may not be able to cope.
Fear is a terrible thing.
It incapacitates you.
Fear can overwhelm and completely invade your life causing misery, it makes everything feel out of balance and exaggerated.
It is at these times, I find, that wrong decisions are made, quickly and not necessarily sensibly.
We are all vulnerable when fear has clutched hold of us , when it twists our view so that all we can feel and see is through fear’s perception.
It is so important to hold on to truth when fear comes knocking. It is important to remember who you are. It is important to remain confident in your self and seek for wisdom in any decisions or actions you need to take.
Cling on to God and hold fast. Banish all fear in Jesus name. For He is powerful, He will return things to right balance and flow. He can help you see clearly and truly and the Spirit can help guide you wisely.
Seek truth at such times. Hold on to what you know to be true. Keep close to love and let that love fill you. Remember God’s promise and find hope in it. For he says ‘ I am with you’. Avoid reacting from fear.
Instead respond in the Power and strength of the love which He brings. Be confident in the Lord, for fear is not of love.
Never be a victim has always been Linda’s motto, I am learning how essential that is. A week later it is amazing how much has been sorted out; the key is taking your power back.
We banish all fear in Jesus Christ’s name.
We live in hope and place our trust in Him.
Amen

The Trinity is Pure Flow

I love the time before dawn.
Every morning, I get up early, do what has to be done, then I make myself a coffee, settle down, with a sigh of comfort, in front of the fire, especially on these cold mornings, to write my journal. And every morning the dog presents me with a ball to throw !
The journal always has to wait.
Who can resist the love and adoration in a dog’s eye, the way its whole body glows with anticipation, the sheer beauty of its presence ?
I was reading about the unconditional way dogs love in Richard Rhor’s masterpiece on the Trinity : “The Divine Dance”, this morning :
“Surely this is why Jesus told us to be like children. There is nothing stopping the pure flow in a child or a dog, and that’s why any of us who have an ounce of eros, humanity, or love in us are defenceless against such unguarded presence.”
The Trinity is pure flow, that is what he is saying.
Wow, I think it is incredible to think of God’s love as akin to the way, Camy the Corgi , looking right into me, engages me with unbound joy.
But this is the bit that has really made an impression on me :
“We see this flow in the attraction of all beauty, in all admiring, in all ecstasy, in all solidarity with any suffering.”
Yes, I can attest to that, for there is a light that shines with radiant brightness in Linda, despite the decades of awful suffering , an overwhelming beauty and presence that sweeps me off my feet , lifts me up, like a dancer, into the flow of what she has long called the Heart of Love !

The Outsider

I have a strong sense of being an outsider, even though we live in a holy place, a place of ancient pilgrimage, even though there is a church opposite, even though we are surrounded by religious communities, these are all completely inaccessible to my wife.
I rarely go to church.
As a consequence, we, who have lived here many years, are not known. I sat in the car, last evening, across the street, seeing how the neighbours genuinely care for each other, little acts of kindness.
We are not ignored, rather life goes on around us, without us. I can’t remember the last time anyone enquired about my wife, so desperately, screamingly ill, so acutely, politically, medically, socially oppressed.
How strange the pretence that a suffering woman in their midst does not exist, here in this staunchly church going, Christian community. There is just a feeling , I experience of being judged, somehow.
The  Epiphany is all about the outsider, who dares to follow a star. Those who knew the truth, were not part of the religious establishment.
Our isolation here, in this holy place, raises questions , in my mind, about what it means to be a Christian. All I know is that just the other night I opened the back door and gasped in wonder at the moon and Venus, shining just above our cottage in extraordinary unity.
How wonderful !
My wife has taught me a great deal about God, who is so deeply present with Linda, that my life cannot help but be suffused with awe and wonder, for which I could cry, I am so grateful.
What treasures our local church is missing out on.

Those Who Suffer

A Hindu mystic once said that those who suffer are God’s messengers.
Those who suffer know why Jesus emphasised faith and trust so much; for they know how to wait, time and again, before journeying ever more deeply into the depths of the Paschal mystery, the mystery of the Cross.
The spiritual life is always about falling, stripping away, desolation, finding, transformation, transfiguration.
Those who suffer are the messengers of God, so close are they to God that any falsehood is exposed, stands out like a sore thumb.
I often wonder if my wife, who has not been to Church for many, many years, could ever sit in silence in Church, listening to a sermon, without speaking out.
I suspect not.

Courage

Every day you have to summon up the courage to persevere ; whether you are a carer or the person who is in intolerable suffering.
As carer you have to summon the courage to keep on facing each day, looking on while the person you love continues to struggle with devastating symptoms and illness.
You have to keep seeing the distress they are in, you have to hold onto your own distress and master it , so that you can keep on helping, keep on understanding, keep on persevering, watching the one you love struggling in tears, feeling their irritation and irritability, knowing you are helpless to take their pain and suffering away.
The person who is suffering has to summon and keep summoning the courage to cope with their indescribable and ongoing intolerable symptoms.
They have to summon up the courage to go within and seek peace , patience, hope,  love, tolerance, kindness. They have to keep aiming to be bigger than the illness again and again.
Especially when your illness and your physical reality has been almost completely diminished in the eyes of most of the world and the medical profession, it is a tremendously difficult task, summoning up the wherewithal to keep looking ahead with hope in your heart, .
Believe me, it takes guts, defiance, perseverance, determination, will power and vast emotional, spiritual and mental strength to keep on coping, to summon up love to help you through each moment.
Love does not fail .
You have all the power of heaven and earth working with you.
We have found you are lifted up on eagles wings , you are strengthened and renewed again and again.

You Are Beautiful!

” How beautiful you are, my love.How beautiful you are !”

Song of Songs
How wonderful and amazing it is to be told that you are beautiful.
Can we allow this into ourselves and believe it ? For it is the truth.
God who is beyond words., who is the breath you breathe ; you are so close to Him, has made you beautiful .
We need to listen, hear and accept the truth of this.Truth, on the deepest level, is always beautiful and healing.
Let us pray to see and know
our own beauty and that
of each other.
Let us give thanks for Joy
unbound, flowing from the Heart of
Love.
May our joy be complete in Him.
Amen

Believe In Your Own Power!

What is important about Power is to believe in your own Power in any one moment, to bring about change, to break a chain, to set people free, to free your self !

Equally important, in any one moment , is to not give your power away to any ideology, to other people’s opinion, to any person or system, or authority.
True Power does not come from status , wealth , authority . It comes from integrity – and a humble encounter in truth, that has nothing to do with playing games, with puffing up ones ego, with coming from fear.
It has everything to do with love and genuine freedom. Do not be afraid !
Power is the fruit of Truth, which cuts through hypocrisy, arrogance, self importance, power playing and abuse with a blade of light, which when wielded wisely brings inner peace, harmony, healing, abundance, justice.

Revolution

I have spent many years fighting for a revolution; but that revolution is no longer possible for me to fight.
The term “Fatigue” has completely taken over, dominated everything to such an extent that it is no longer possible to say who has what disease anymore. ME itself has been renamed and defined virtually out of existence.
I turn on the radio, I hear the same old baloney about psychiatric intervention.
I have fought for 25 years, I have done some good things, but I feel I have lost the battle to separate ME from CFS.
Yet a big part of me still wants to carry on doing the same old things that I have been doing for the last 25 years, things that, in the midst of chaos, have given my life meaning and some kind of hope; this is how we are, us fragile souls, in the face of overwhelming change.
But I know I have to find new ways forward, if I am to effectively help my wife.
This change in direction; it is a time of great loss and risk.
A Prayer :
When loss seeks to unhinge you
And you are totally bewildered and confused
When you forget to remember who you are 
When the way ahead is unclear.
When the present is far too painful to cope with,
May the Lord come to you and hold YOU,
MAY He comfort you may he console YOU
Bless you with all his gifts.
May the Lord lift your life
May the Lord restore you
So that you can once more see
Your true worth and beauty
May you Shine in the world again
Amen

Enter Our Dreams

This prayer breaks my heart. For Linda never knows restorative sleep, she is never comfortable and every day is a torment.
Yet she has enormous gifts of hope and light.
Lord grant us a peace-filled night
A sleep that restores
Dreams that comfort
A comfortable bed
Hope for the new day
And a blessing for the future
So that when we wake
The day will hold a new promise
of something more than total pain
More than the emptying of repeated paralysis
More than profound hypersensitivity
More than utter desperation
And the cruelty of despair.
Enter our dreams as we sleep
And touch us with your love
Heal us in our need
Guide us in our thoughts
Lead us into light
Come to us in power
Bless us with the gift of hope
Leaving us consoled and renewed
as the new day breaks,
Amen

We Ask, Then We Wait

We ask ….then we wait and we must listen for an answer. Our need will be heard.
God never abandons us even in the bleakest of places.
It requires great inner strength when in the depth of torment to remember this and to cry out for aid when all seems impossible and God seems distant. Yet this is what we do, for we truly believe that His love and mercy come to us with some sign of love.
He will not leave us suffering, desolate without hope. Even when there is no immediate alleviation, that hope itself is a miraculous expression of love and faithfulness.
May our prayers be heard and answered in a way we recognise.

All We Need Do Is Call

All we need do is call His name, however small our voice, still it will be heard, even if it is just the tiniest whisper of a thought, for God hears us and knows us and His love is everlasting. His response to us is total in His gift of love and kindness. His mercy flows in untold ways to touch our lives.
We may not always feel Him or remember how close He is, yet He is here and knows all suffering, has felt it intimately and infinitely and loves us. Of this we can be certain. He prays and continues to pray for us. He loves and tends to us, suffering with us. He knows our pain. His response is our blessing.
Let us then remember Him, especially in the bleakest moments, expecting Him to hear and save us.
Let me be still
With You oh Lord
Help me whisper Your holy name
In confidence and trust
Knowing the Word will
heal and save me.
Keep me safe this day.
Amen

Spiritual Protection

It feels good to know that we can ask God for protection,  to shield us from all that assaults us, mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually, and to know that that power of spiritual protection is real, almost tangible to feel and will keep us on a straight path.

For God’s promise is that He is with us!

The greatest and well known prayer of protection is the Our Father, the unique and amazing prayer shared with us by the Son as he prayed to His Father in heaven. Let us always remember that when we too ask for help, when we need comfort, when we need saving, when we need Mercy, He will come to our aid in a unique and wonderful way, for how can God not give, when we ask for his support?
For He is love and that love is everlasting and knows no bounds.
Amen

Prayer of protection
Lord I need protection,
So much assails me daily.
Help me to know that
You will always provide it,
That angels guard me,
That You love me,
And that all will somehow be well
Even when it does not feel that way.
Amen

The Prayer of a Carer

The despair of a carer whose ability to cope, for another second, is hopeless.

Whose body is frozen.
Whose mind has shut down.
Whose hands hang lifeless.
Whose speech is mute.
Whose heart breaks with compassion.
Whose work lies in tatters.
Who has lost the fight.
Who is scrambling to hold on even so.
To the infinitely precious.
Knowing that what he is going through is nothing.
Not compared to the person’s screaming suffering.
Not remotely, not a dot, close.
The prayer of a carer;
love,
that will never give up on him.

Hope

Place your hope in the Lord and all things good. Keep your sight on Him for His Love and Mercy know no bound. The greatest suffering can be endured when hope remains, however tiny a flame, flickering in your heart.
Hope touches our life and lights up the path head of us, a path held in love, compassion, goodness. Possibility is illuminated even if the possibility seems tiny or insignificant from the outside, any change, any goodness that touches us in the depth of suffering is a strength and a blessing.
May our trust in the Lord and our Hope in His goodness bring unimagined comfort and blessings.

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Where God Cannot Reach Us

When I am in the chaos of unutterable indescribable agony I cannot necessarily feel God at
all. The power of the physical experience is huge, vast and all encompassing. I cannot bear the moment I am in.
There is no other moment than this one and it seems to spread out to all eternity in an eternal moment of excruciating torture. I don’t really have the words to describe the experience.
 It is more than torment, more than torture, more than indescribable, more than intolerable, more than unacceptable, more than completely unbearable. It is screamingly hostile and negating. It is barbaric in its cruelty. It is exquisitely diminishing. It is almost completely incomprehensible in its agony it is so vast, so punishing, so pure, so bleak, so empty of life and full of sensations that is beyond endurance.
 It is no wonder that Jesus called out to the Father and asked why had he abandoned him. Such is the nature of that place that all awareness can be blocked except for the pain itself that pierces every cell and every space between cells, every existing fibre of being is caught up in the torturing pain. God, who loves us still and holds us all, is helpless to help us in that place in the sense that He cannot reach us, even though he reaches out to us.
 He weeps for us. He weeps with us, yet the physicality of the pain is immense and unquenchable. There is no other feeling here.
All focus must be on coping, on bearing the unbearable, on remaining, on the pain itself, for there is no place that is not pain. There is no place that is not agony , there is no place that is not on fire with the violence of hurt, within the physicality of the body. 
The pain screams non existence at you. The pain will consume you. It is not easy to feel spirit in this place. Your mind is huge , it can cry out, but whether it can hear or receive a reply is unlikely. The pain alone is all consuming. You just want it to stop. You do not know when it will kill you, for surely you cannot remain existing in such intense violation of life.

Mercy, the Width of a Soul

May all mercy be received.
We cannot always forgive, but we can always show mercy. Mercy flows to us freely from the Heart of love. Mercy touches and heals all our brokenness. Mercy flows in where forgiveness has not manifested or been accepted and blesses, comforts, consoles, restores us all.
It is the height of spiritual attainment.
It is the depth of spiritual blessing.
It is the width of a person’s soul.
For to know God is to find Mercy and to receive God is to accept love into all your being and that enables your soul to shine and touch the oneness and wonder of God and in opening up in such a perfect way, to enter fully into the glory and goodness of Mercy that flows forever from the Trinity.
Receiving Mercy is the purest blessing.
It is all.

Let God Lift You

Every day can be a struggle, especially for those dealing with serious illness, physical pain, personal bereavement, loss. The demands of ordinary living can threaten to overwhelm us and press in on us, making everything even harder to bear. Pain can be unimaginable, intolerable, never ending. Loss can feel so final that all hope is taken away.
It is especially at times like this that the light of God can suddenly, mysteriously and amazingly touch our lives and bring us strength and hope unexpected, so that a new vision become apparent.
It is at times like this when we can suddenly feel God’s gracious presence, utterly here with us and feel His gentle touch as He lifts us and carries us most carefully, through the day. Always remember He loves and tends to our needs.
He can transform the bleakest moment and save us.
So seek His loving arms for comfort and consolation, his strength to lift us through the most dire of moments. Trust in Him. He is with us, for that is His promise.

Never Limit God

When things get desperate and suffering deteriorates further and isolation and neglect threaten to overwhelm us, this is when we need to reach out and ask in confidence that we will be heard and answered powerfully and be open to receive in abundance and trust.
We have found this to be true in our own lives.
This is not easy, yet God is so present with those who suffer and knows each burden that we carry and He can  and will transform and transfigure our lives.
At the most horrendous of moments, when all has seemed lost and impossible, the infinite love  and mercy of God is ever present and powerful beyond all imagining.
Let us not then, limit God, by any short sightedness or limited perspective, nor be cut off from Him by our desperate experiences and depth of suffering.
Let us hold out our hands to receive His blessing and trust that even seemingly impossible things can be possible with God. And remain hopeful of His Power and goodness, His kindness and tenderness towards us;  trusting in  this in all the circumstances  we find ourselves in. Amen

When no path is visible

When no path is visible And all hope has dimmed Shine a light for me To regain the truth that all is possible And things can...