Monday, December 10, 2018

Language Change

This week a friend was telling me about a medical procedure her husband was having. I did not know the term so I Googled it.

Did I research it? No. Did I look it up? No. I Googled it.

I realize this bit of language changed a long time ago and I have been using Google as a verb for a number of years. Still today it struck me as funny. We still talk about researching a subject but even as we do, we know that a large part of that research is done on line and a large part of that is from Google.

It's just interesting the way language is a living a entity that keeps moving and changing.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

The Second Sunday in Advent

It’s the second Sunday in Advent. Darkness reigns not only in our brains but also in our souls and on all sorts of landscapes: politics, home, church, and school. This prayer, written by Keith Watkins, sometime before 1995, still seems very appropriate for today.

God, we confess that ours is still a world in which Herod seems to rule:
the powerful are revered,
the visions of the wise are ignored,
the poor are afflicted,
and the innocent are killed.

You show us that salvation comes
in the vulnerability of a child,
yet we hunger for the “security” of weapons and walls.

You teach us that freedom comes in loving service,
yet we trample on others in our efforts to be “free.”

Forgive us, God, when we look to the palace instead of the stable, 
when we heed politicians more than prophets.

Renew us with the spirit of Bethlehem,
That we may be better prepared for your coming. Amen.

(from Thankful Praise: A Resource for Christian Worship)

Monday, December 3, 2018

Hanukkah Light

When I posted about the first light of Advent, I had not realized that Hanukkah began yesterday as well. I was pleased to find this quote which speaks to what I wrote and reflects my thinking as well. Thank you, Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks.

“For though my faith is not yours and yours is not mine, if we are each free to light our own flame, together we can banish some of the darkness of the world.” (Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks)

Sunday, December 2, 2018

The First Sunday in Advent

Yesterday I posted to FaceBook that Dean and I had decided to forego a tree this year. It was a rather easy decision to make once I had realized what I really loved about our tree: the lights. The tree sits on a table in our little solarium and filled the tiny room with light. The answer seemed to be to have the light without having the tree. And so we draped the lights across the windows where they are multiplied by their reflections.

Our treeless solarium is lovely. The Nativity is lit by a small candle and we eat at the table surrounded by light and the reflected love of the holy family

Somehow that speaks to me of Advent. This year I added our Love candle to the wreath. It continues to glow even when we need to extinguish the other candles. There is so much darkness right now: racism, sexism, fear and plain old hatred. We need Light. Even the gentle light of one Advent candle to remind us that Love does come down at Christmas and Hope is born eternal. 

May your Advent or Solstice journey toward the Light be blessed and filled with Hope and may the gentle light of your spirit fill your space.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Random Thanksgiving Thoughts

Whenever I am asked for what I am thankful my list always begins with clean sheets, indoor plumbing and anesthetics. I realize this is a very practical gratitude list and has nothing to do with world peace or love of family and friends or any of the other things we are all grateful for. The fact remains, those are the first things on my list.

After that my gratitude is wide open.

Dean and I always sit over our Thanksgiving feast and express our thanks for family, calling each of our grands by name and thinking of how blessed we are to be a part of their family. We eat well. We have a roof over our heads. All of our children are happy where they are and doing well in life. We are very healthy for our age and blessed to have found each other.

And then of course, there's food. We were a little less traditional this year:

Dean prepared a rib roast on his "new" convection grill given us by son Rob.

Mashed potatoes and brussel sprouts with bacon accompanied the roast.
Yes, that is snow out the window. Winter arrived Thanksgiving morning.

The only other picture I have of the day is from the family in Oregon.
Along with the traditional turkey, dressing, gravy and other trimmings, 
the Oregon folks had desserts!!
Joshua (apple pie), Sam (homemade pomegranate cranberry bars), Trinity
(pumpkin and berry pies) and Akira (chocolate). 
Trinity made her first pie crust for the apple her dad loves. Joshua and Sam
made the fruit bars from scratch. Akira made the chocolate filling. 
All of them are welcome in my kitchen any time.

Our blessings are plentiful. Our prayers remain with those whose blessings are more
basic as they are simply grateful to be alive. May we all continue to be thankful for all
Life and Love bring us.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Driving Through Northern California

Lots of California is on fire and that includes the north. Although my drive home from Oregon was free of fire, there was lots of smoke. 

There are two kinds of fires: prescribed burns, set to control wild fires and wild fires, set by high winds, lightning, loose sparks of some kind. Both have one thing in common: smoke. I think I encountered both kinds today. Smoke hung low in the valleys and covered the tops of mountains. Signs said “Smoke ahead. Don’t report.” And so I just kept driving and no one coming toward me looked like they were having any problems. The eyes still itch and the breathing is still hard sometimes. 

Another observation: at one point I had on both my phone and my car GPS. They both told me to turn left. Now I have a horrible sense of direction - inherited from my father I understand. But I Knew - after all I had just come this way a week ago - that I was supposed to turn right. I pulled over and called Dean and told him my dilemma. He assured me that I was correct. And of course as soon as I made the right turn and drove a short way down the road, both GPSs adjusted. But what if I hadn’t known? It might not have been the wrong turn but it certainly would have been the long one. Sigh. 

Every time I make this trip, I think I have gotten too old and then I make it and I am fine and I cope with little quirks here and there and I have a grand time with my family and then make it home just fine. Grateful for two good trips. Continuing to pray for those who have lost homes and loved ones in the fires. ~ blessings on your journeys wherever they may take you. 

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Wild Horses

I know today is election day and this post should probably be some deeply philosophical statement about the importance of voting. I know we have just spent ten days with grandchildren and you should be and will be getting pictures of adorable little people playing soccer, winning awards and posing patiently with their grandparents. However, today I am offering you a very gentle, peaceful scene which I had never seen before: Wild horses in the wild.

We were driving across 120 and there they were. Dean had to slow down for them to cross the road although they turned and ran for a short distance. Beautiful. Then they stopped to graze again and so we stopped to take pictures. The car behind us stopped to take their own pictures and to stay out of the way of our pictures. We all smiled and waved at each other when the pictures were done. 

As I looked behind us as we drove away, the horses were starting back across the road. It was a lovely moment in time so here they are.