On Saturday I participated on a zoom call with Ian, Rosa, Allan and Janice. The Innovative Ministry Centre led the season and the focus of the session was social media and the changing church. We were each invited to check in with the questions; how is your soul? and what is happening your church? As each of the 25 particpants checked in about the state of his or her soul, a commonality of the responses began to emerge. There was a sense of gratitude for each person's situation in life AND there was a heaviness, a grief, a fear, or a sense of broken-heartedness for what is going on in our world. And depending on the day or even the hour one of those emotions would find its home on a person's soul; gratitude, grief and fear.
I so appreciated hearing from others that they too had been holding in tension their sense of blessedness alongside the feellings of grief, fear and an aray of other emotions. This is not an easy time. It brings moments of joy from simple pleasures of life, challenges from restrictions, stress around new routines and anxiety about what is next.
In this challenging time it is important to have compassion for ourselves and to take time to tend and nourish our soul. For some it is a walk with our dog or listening to music. For others it may be crafts with the children or zoom with family. Or you may like to have some quiet time, personal time walking or sitting and listening and praying.
How do you care for your soul?
One of the devotionals that I appreciate is from John Philip Newell. He writes beautiful prayers with a Celtic Christianty infuence.
The prayer that I am sharing with you is a reminder that we are not alone. Jesus, the One who tends to and heals our souls promises to be with us always. I invite you to take time to read this prayer and listen and pray
Do not be afraid. I am with you always.
(Matthew 28:10, 20)
Our heart is comforted
in its awareness of You
Soul within our soul
Life within all life.
Our heart is comforted
in remembering You
Giver of this day
Gift of every moment.
May we be bearers of comfort.
May we be strong in our soul
to cry at the wrongs of nations
to weep with the bleeding earth
to mourn with those who mourn this night
in the loss of life and lands
in the loss of dreams and hope.
May we be strong in our soul this night.
John Philip Newell, 'Praying with the Earth: A Prayerbook for Peace'