surrender and the independent spirit…

Dave and I had a short courtship and a short engagement. I knew when I met him that I should marry him. It wasn’t that I was head over heels…I mean, I was, of course. It was that I knew this is the one I needed to marry. It was as if God spoke it in my ear. My response to God was a stop sign palm. I really did NOT want…

words…

After all the media frenzy and extended rhetoric about rhetoric from the last week I find myself moving away from all news sources. I get overwhelmed, saturated with opinion and fact checking and engagement. Even my spirit needs distance from all the voices. I found myself falling into the Jesus Prayer again last night. I have a retreat coming up this weekend which I am leading and am struggling with a few…

watching…

At this point when I attend services I sit in the back, next to  my favorite icon of the Theotokos and I watch, a lot. I love watching. It might be the writer in me or maybe it’s the introvert. Introverts and writers are watchers, after all. It’s fascinating the see the various levels of interaction and action. When entering,  some people move quickly to a seat, others make a quick run…

entering in…

I know what it is that gives me such pause whenever I attend Orthodox services. I feel so much like an outsider and at the same time, I cling to my identity as outsider.  Being an outsider has some value in that I’m not committed, not given the heavy responsibility of showing up and being engaged. If I have a misstep it’s easily forgiven, because I’m an outsider, because I don’t know…

fasting…

I’m fasting this week. I’m probably not supposed to tell you that. I think I’m supposed to suffer in silence when I do things like this. I’m fairly sure the withholding of that information has something to do with gaining humility but fasting makes me cranky and so I’m telling you about it. It’s a blood sugar issue on a physical level and a deprivation issue on the spiritual side. Why the…

circle…

I am slowly expanding my circle of Orthodox friends. It’s a slow process and especially difficult for me. I’m so conditioned to move away from people, sit in a corner and watch from a distance. I’m challenged in this now though, I feel I have some imaginary deadline to meet. I feel that I don’t have the luxury of time. Perhaps it’s not a bad thing to move out of my normal,…

chotki…

My sister in law saw my prayer rope on my wrist the day before yesterday. I had just put it back on moments earlier. I had lost track of it in all the cooking and dish washing and for a moment I thought I had tossed it out by accident.  I found it deep in my pocket when I was alone in my room. I sighed audibly in relief and then I…