Meditation for March 27, 2020
Henri Nouwen, Bread for the Journey
Living Faithfully in an Ambiguous World
Our hearts and minds desire clarity. We like to have a clear picture of a situation, a clear view of how things fit together, and clear insight into our own and the world’s problems. But just as in nature colors and shapes mingle without clear-cut distinctions, human life doesn’t offer the clarity we are looking for. The borders between love and hate, evil and good, beauty and ugliness, heroism and cowardice, care and neglect, guilt and blamelessness are mostly vague, ambiguous, and hard to discern.
It is not easy to live faithfully in a world full of ambiguities. We have to learn to make wise choices without needing to be entirely sure.
This prayer comes from our friends in the United Church of Canada.
In this time of COVID-19, we pray: When we aren’t sure, God, help us be calm; when information comes from all sides, correct and not, help us to discern; when fear makes it hard to breathe, and anxiety seems to be the order of the day, slow us down, God; help us to reach out with our hearts, when we can’t touch with our hands; help us to be socially connected, when we have to be socially distant; help us to love as perfectly as we can, knowing that “perfect love casts out all fear.”
For the doctors, we pray, for the nurses, we pray, for the technicians and the janitors and the aides and the caregivers, we pray, for the researchers and theorists, the epidemiologists and investigators, for those who are sick, and those who are grieving, we pray, for all who are affected, all around the world… we pray for safety, for health, for wholeness.
May we feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked and house those without homes; may we walk with those who feel they are alone, and may we do all that we can to heal the sick— in spite of the epidemic, in spite of the fear. Help us, O God, that we might help each other.
In the love of the Creator, in the name of the Healer, in the life of the Holy Spirit that is in all and with all, we pray.
May it be so.
—A prayer during times of COVID-19 by the Right Rev. Richard Bott, Moderator of the United Church of Canada
Another of my faves from Gary Larson’s The Far Side.
And, finally, a few more fun links to share.
Divers capture a blanket octopus unveiling her billowing membrane. (Really, it’s beautiful!)
Cats knock over dominos. (Trust me).
Photographer Robert Bush Sr. compiled this video of animals crossing a log bridge in the mountains of Pennsylvania.
James Fridman is a Photoshop genius who trolls people with his hilarious edits. Anyone can send their photos to Jamie to have them edited, but there’s a little catch—he takes every request literally. Even knowing what might happen, people still happily turn over their photos to this Photoshop master.
Stay safe and stay well!