upper room daily devotions

Wednesday, December 20, 2006


My vocation is seeking God.
In the warmth and simple love of my cats. Georgie, neurotic from who knows what, whines until his back is scratched, right in front of his tail. And Fred, curmudgeonly Fred, he picks with his nails until welcomed under the covers, to flip and roll with delight in the warmth of my body.

My vocation is seeking God.
In the struggles between wills in my church,
In the streets dappled with newly fallen rain,
In each face I see: smooth and not yet weathered by time and experience,
wrinkled and battered like a well traveled suitcase.
It's a good job.

But too often I miss God for the things in front of me.
I forget to look up to the sky: blue, white, magenta, gray,
dotted with birds of all kinds - airplanes zooming people near and far -
stars filled with mystery far and long ago.
I forget to find the miracle in a smile or bitter hot coffee or the home which steadfastly shelters me every night.
How can I miss the miracle of life wrestling all around me?
But I do. My eyes lose the wonder they once had
when every day I awoke to say, "What a beautiful day."
And my mom shook her head in wonder at me.

On the street corner, in front of the local market, is a homeless woman
in her heavy ski jacket, with wiry gray hair.
She is there most days
selling a newspaper
written to remind people like me that not every one can forget life's wrestling matches; that there are people who watch the sky every night, when the rain falls to dapple the grass, bend the trees, and soak the evergreens. They are there to see the stars in the nights so cold the air burns our lungs. She is John the Baptist.
Less crazy
Less loud
But a prophet
Telling me something important about God.

I rejoice.
Time stands still.
Every time I look her in the eye.
There is God.
Not in my sanctuary.
Not in my ideas.
Not in doctrine.
She stands before me when I need a quick lunch or milk,
reflecting the expanse of the sky
and bending under the weight of my forgetfulness.

Her beauty,
Her sorrow,
Are both there - Divine and relentless.
I should buy milk more often.

We all need awe.

No comments:

Blog Archive