“We can be unhappy about many things, but Joy can still be there…it is important to become aware that every moment of our Life we have an opportunity to choose Joy…It is in the choice that our true Freedom lies, and that Freedom is, in the final analysis, the Freedom to Love.” Henri Nouwen
I was greeted by these words upon arrival in the Tower, a sacred space atop Mercy by the Sea in Madison, CT. Luggage filled with warm clothes, a crate of writing materials and my favorite afghan in hand, I walked up three flights of stairs for a time of prayer and reflection. Nouwen stayed here too, in the 1970s, and I gratefully return as I did when I worked on Grieving – the Sacred Art: Hope in the Land of Loss. Considering a new project, his wisdom touches my heart, his ministry inspires me to choose joy and to speak of Love.
And speak of Love, I must! I made the choice five years ago to write and publish these Glimmers, the experience and your responses have been such a blessing in my life. You gave me the opportunity to shine my light, to join you and others who choose hope, and to encourage you to shine your own lights upon our hurting world. Our kindness to strangers, our advocacy for the environment, our choice to educate ourselves about racism – all matter. All our thoughts and actions matter. You, dear friends, matter.
Long Island Sound stretches out below me, it’s waters reflect the morning sunrise. Pink, grey, scarlet, light and deep blue fill the sky and sea. The stillness reminds me of last night’s Centering Prayer in the chapel. Our circle, sitting in silence, our hearts replenished after a full day. A reading spoke of courage, and we shared our thoughts into the quiet. One voice remains with me this morning, “We are of God, created and made in Divine likeness. If God were the sun – ever present warmth and light, we are the sun’s rays – extensions of that light on this earth. This is who we are! Courage is needed, not to become a better person, but to claim the amazing and complete person that we are!”
With God’s tender care, I’ve embraced glimmers of this wisdom over the years…a minute or a day at a time. I celebrate this invitation to claim myself as a beloved child of God, at least for today. May this first Glimmer of 2020 come into your heart and remind you of your unique place in this universe, your unique light. Let us join with Henri Nouwen and claim the freedom to bring our loving hearts into the world!
With affection, Lisa
Stay tuned for upcoming event in March!