War of the worlds

War of the worlds

Contemplative Viewfinder

John’s gospel, in particular, talks much about “the world.” κόσμως (cosmos, “the world”) has different meanings. It can be taken to mean:

  1. the created order;
  2. all of humanity;
  3. humanity as fallen.

It can sometimes be a little difficult to determine which meaning is intended by a specific usage. In this week’s gospel lectionary reading, John 17:6-19, the writer uses κόσμως eleven times. Eleven. He’s trying to tell us something. But what?

This text is part of the longest Jesus prayer in the gospels and is part of the farewell discourse—his last meal and conversation with his friends.

I am not asking on behalf of the world, but on behalf of those whom you gave me, because they are yours… 

And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world…

I am not asking you to take them out of the world, but I ask…

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Holy Saturday

The waiting game is hell to play. There is no doubt about it. In this day of control, control, control, I don’t think there is anyone who would deny this truth. Our culture does not gear it’s citizens to wait.

Words, I wrote while on retreat, at Lebh Shomea, in Southeast Texas, in the Rio Grande Valley, ‘no one drives to slow down’, still ring in my ear.

SO today, Holy Saturday, I wonder about the next few months of our lives. My husband and myself. Him being diagnosed, basically in January, with Liver Cancer, we struggled to find doctors who cared. Now having met a Radiation Oncologist, we relax as we feel, he cares and feels that he can give us what we need. To cure the cancerous lesion/tumor. Yet, there are two others, albeit smaller.

And so now, we wait. In the middle of my INTERMITTENT jobs, we wonder how the timing will all work. I have finally reached out to family and church. “Yes”, they said, “We can help.” and our land lord, “Yes”, we can do a different two month lease; intermittent. Yet, I don’t want to be waiting, any longer.  I want to know. I want to have a home.

Here, as I am creating new business cards to serve as Celebrant at weddings, funerals or any Rite or Service discerned might help get through a Life Transition, I wonder. DO I put my address or not?

Time to say: Enough!

Living Gracefully


Last Saturday, I stopped in traffic behind a car that displayed gun decals and a bumper sticker that depicted the “Hello Kitty” character with a bullet hole. The bumper sticker said: “Goodbye Kitty!”

I was appalled! How many children in other cars would see the sick caricature? How twisted is our society when people consider that funny?

The next day, a man with a gun and a grudge walked into a church in Texas and committed our latest massacre. The sickness in our society confronts us again, mere weeks after the massacre in Las Vegas.

Another day of darkness.

Honestly, I’d rather write about anything except another shooting, but we can’t ignore it. The massacres will keep multiplying and the body counts will continue rising until we do something to change it.

It’s time for each of us to say: Enough!

Things that matter

Say it firmly, prophetically and persistently…

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Communication for understanding is always the challenge. How to listen to each other for care and eventual transformation takes tolerance and practice. To dialogue and bracket our judgement, as my spouse Christopher Bear Beam suggests, is essential to move toward deeper relationships. I believe that if we honor each person and the gift of consciousness that everyone is capable of and already presents in some form, we would be more honest and therefore effective in changing consciousness for the life of all on the planet. The amount of difference and similarity that exists between us are like sands on a beach. To think less is to forget the generations that preceded and the virtual miracle of each of our existence today. If we gave everyone honor, from the moment of birth to death, we may be more humane and just planet on which to live.

in the wake of such tragedies where do we begin? To live in such a world where we do not know when the gun will explode out of a hand in mad killing and suicide of all hell broken loose. And we remember all the trauma we lived and died through, before; 9/11, Columbine, Sandy Hook, Pulse nightclub, and that is just a few. A sign perhaps of the distance we create in our world between people and communities. So close yet so very far away. I know on my own journey there were times of lostness and isolation brought out only by gentleness, spaciousness, opportunity, and care. If ever there is a time for kindness and care to anyone you can possibly raise a compassionate word toward; it is now. And if ever you can offer an opportunity and fight for justice and rights for all human beings to reach their full potential in the time they are ready, it is now. Our world may depend upon it.