eyes lift in the night
expectantly preparing
to pull the
blanket of stars
over her
head, yet a
disappointing sheet
of grey masks the light.

Be strong!
For generations
our spiritual ancestors
paved the path
to keep the faith.
Trust in our God
even in the face
of sheer hopelessness.

They could
have thrown in the towel
Like Joseph, thrown into a
pit to die.
Like Moses’ mother
defied the edict.
Like Jesus’ friends
living in utter terror.

But each
moved boldly inward.
Their jealousy, fear, anger,
and doubts were
transformed when those
in harm’s way
acted in love
and demonstrated
respect for others.

Live faith!
Transforming love is
taking place in human hearts.
Trust! Have hope!
Raise up your hands
Dance wildly
Clearing gloom and
revealing sparkling stars!

A realization came upon me this week that it is impossible to express gratitude for what is, when blaming others for all that is not possible this year. There seems to be plenty of blame to go around, whether deserved or not.
In the late 14th century, Julian of Norwich wrote these inspiring words:
It would be contrary to nature
To put blame on God
Or show any lack of trust
Because of my sin
Since God does not blame me.
Upon hearing some of the unreasonable blame, I feel either pain or burst out laughing because I am so surprised by it! Unfortunately, I also have to examine my own heart and find it stashed there. Knowing that God does not blame me, then releasing the very human ways I tend to judge myself is doable.
For a while, it helps to sit with the ways that I blame another and even feel it as tightness in my body. By praying for those people and situations, and sending love outward, blame is transformed, and love expands. When choosing to be liberated from the thoughts, they eventually fall as a surely as the leaves have released themselves from the trees and now lay crumbled on the ground. This process may take a long time if the thoughts are deeply imbedded. Yet only then can we truly enter into the state of gratitude. And dance!
Isn’t that the space we want to be in this Thanksgiving? Grateful for family, friends, a warm home, and above all our compassionate God who will not abandon us no matter how many times our minds go astray.
In gratitude for new life on the way, let us come with sparkling hearts and enter into the spirit of Thanksgiving, grateful for the forgiveness, faith, and strength we’ve been given. The gift of God’s light shines brightly through you!
Let your light shine!
Rev. Marta Wheeler