Monastic Skete- Daily Living A Hermit Lifestyle of Meditation
I am retired now, a full-time writer. I still actively do retreats. I love the works of Thomas Merton and my new book, "Spiritual Journaling -God's Whispers in Daily Living" is available on Kindle and Amazon. http://amzn.to/qQz6Ng
Monday, May 28, 2007
Memorial Day Holiday
because of crowds. Just cereal. I re-read The Art of Pilgrimage. Drink
"Never trust a thought that didn't come by walking," says Nietzsche. I
sit outside, read, and daydream. The puzzle can be complicated. We can
gather too many fragments to our lives. Pieces that can never be
transformed. There is always the light that needs replacing, the
unlosened screw, the hole needing repair. Complications !
At the library yesterday I checked Pepy's Diary and Boswell's Johnson.
Walking Fleet Street does that to you. "The call is always a journey of
HOW DO WE LOSE OUR SOULS?
We become engaged in the illusion of life we have bought into. Work
becomes our master. We become slaves to another's dream. We are
possessed by a dream other than our own. Demands become our
commandments. We lose our soul when we have no time for ourselves. No
solitude. Maybe watching the world through the eyes of a puppy is the
Friday, May 25, 2007
Finally mowed lawn. Slower than usual to protect my eye that had a tear
in the retina. Poured a coke classic in vanilla blue bell ice cream.
Delicious. Did it twice. Am looking forward to 3 days off.
Per http://bryansherwood.com he says Brother Roderick, a monk at
Gethsemani for 56 years, died Monday.
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Our hotel, the Crowne Plaza at Saint James, was two doors down from Westminister Chapel. Everytime I walked by that church I felt the inspiration of the past. One of its great pastors was G. Campbell Morgan. Morgan was one of the great textual expository preachers of his time. The Bible was his light as he preached. Click on the above and read his story. It is inspirational.
Monday, May 21, 2007
Still jet lagged a bit. Trying to get re-organized at work and home. So much trash can accumulate in our lives without us knowing it. We need a trash inventory on occasion.
I am enjoying the sunny, warm weather. Quite a change from the rainy days of England. Not ready for another trip any time soon. Gas had gone up 21 cents per gallon while we were gone.
Sunday, May 20, 2007
It is good to be home. I spent aa couple of hours outside under a tree reading A History of Christianity by Kenneth Scott Latourette, especially religion in England drom the 1500s onward. For onxce I understood the meaning of much I saw last week.
Saturday, May 19, 2007
Nashville Flighti Final Hour
The final 57 minutes. When I get home, I am going to buy milk, orange juice, and donuts. To bed about 8 with hopes of making Sunday School in the morning.
About the spiritual condition of London again. In last nights paper an evangelical church is building a $140 million (US Money) building that will seat 8,000 people. Presently, St. Pauls with 2500 seats is tops. So, I guess, evangelical Christianity is moving forward.
Re-adjusting to time warp will take some time. At least my watch is set right now.
I plan on reading Alice and Wonderland again. Mostly I remember a musical or two I have seen of it. Somewhere I read she went to Buckingham Palace to see the changing of the guard. I will check that out.
One of the big questions in my mind is, "why is there no ice in London." So many places acted a little warped when I ask for ice unsuccessfully.
Why did Christopher Wren build so many churches? Was Christopher Robin kin to Christopher Wren?
Besides taxis, buses, and trains, there are few real cars in London.
THIS AND THAT
My back hurts on this final leg. I probably need to buy new shoes. Will the newspaper be there today? The mail?
How about readjustment to the weather. I am sure it is much hotter in the US. Also days were longer in London. It was daylight from 5 am until 9:15 at
How have the Braves done? The things I missed most was M and M, Cuddles, Aiden, my bed, and my inno.
We left London 1 hour and 15 minutes late thus missing our connection in Charlotte, still we get a flight out 2 hours later. We had to go through so many security points on way back. I believe 3. Gets frustrating.
I am eating a barbeque pork sandwich in the airport. I did not see any BBQ pork sandwichs in London, although I saw a rack of ribs but was not in the mood.
The last 2 meals were at Garfunkel's Restaurant in London. I highly recommend it. Clean, good food, no smoking.
One more flight then HOME.
Friday, May 18, 2007
London-late Friday Night, May 18
We are mostly packed. Guess I will not be blogging much tomorrow as we
will be on the airline and we have to have phones in our baggage says
THINGS TO TAKE AWAY
A summary would include:
A greater appreciation of English History, especially Henry VIII and
A greater understanding of how the world fits together and how our
cultures clash and expand.
A greater appreciation of changes related to the protestant reformation.
I need to study it more.
A time of thanksgiving for emails I received and encouragement of
readers of this journey.
A tremendous expression of thanksgiving to God for allowing us this
And am always thankful for Janet, the perfect traveling companion. We
walk, we ride, we eat, we have a wonderful time together. Thanks be to
St. Paul's is wonderful. Ate at Crypt Cafe, among the tombstones, at St.
Paul's, near Wren's Tomb. Followed with a trip down Fleet Street to the
Temple of DaVinci Code fame. It was closed for a wedding. Tons of
tourist groups surrounding it.
Someone wrote and asked about the spiritual condition of people in
London. I am not sure I am a good gage of the spiritual condition. The
evangelical church had a meaningful attendance and seemed to be a part
of a big prayer revival which culminates in London.
The Catholic church, Westminister Cathedral, was full for mass. The
larger churches have 3 to 5 services most days. I saw many people
kneeling and praying. The communion service we attended at St. Pauls was
meaningful to us, a sense of the Lord's presence.
It reminded me of Saint Paul at Athens and the inscription to the
unknown God. Like the U.S. Commercialization seems to be the God of
choice. Movies are big, the movie stars are like goddesses. Every
newspaper is full of them as they trace steps to the newest midnight
Oh well, one meal to go. I am homesick. When I return I want to go see a
movie and get a bag of buttered popcorn. Also I want to go to Longhorn
Steakhouse for a filet, see The family and animals. Tomorrow will be a
big day, mostly in the air.
London-Friday, May 18, 2007
Eating breakfast at our favorite breakfast spot, Bon Gusto. Eggs, bacon
(really ham), and cau-fee. Slept late, until after 9 a.m. The only thing
to do today is st. Paul's cathedral.
It has warmed up. The sun is out.
Thursday, May 17, 2007
My other journeys
If you have enjoyed this ventures check out my online book:
London Thursday Reflections
Interesting observations to me are the similarites between the U.S. And
London. On opposite sides of a busy intersection near Victoria Station
is a McDonalds and A Pizza Hut.
The papers have the same movie stars pictures plastered on them:
Brittany Spears, Andie McDowell, and Minnie Driver.
The news here is that, my favorite, Melinda Doolittle is no longer on
American Idol, Bush and Blair's meeting in Washington, D.C. Is top
At afternoon tea yesterday at Harrods the song being played was Johnny
Cash singing I'll Walk the Line.
There are so many similaries and yet differences. So in reflecting we
are part of a larger picture than we can imagine.
Come Jul 1 England becomes smoke free. Just got off tube and even in
clear space smoke is prevalent. "Mind the Gap" is primary word on tube.
Feel frustated riding the tube during busy times. No seats. Everyone
holding on for dear life.
Still English have taken mass transit seriously, not like US. 20 miles
from cities are no suburbs because it cost to much for car etc. We have
taken our cars for granted. Mostly here are tiny cars. Lots of Prius
Buckingham Burger. Can't get use to the smoke. Makes my head ache.
The Churchhill Museum, underground, was terrific. We were there when it
awakened this morning. It was opened in 2005 in the original bunkers
where Churchhill, family, and war council lived during the war. What
appreciation one owes to Churchhill's speeches during the war.
This was followed by us seeing the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham
Palace. Roads were lined in every direction to see band and soldiers
marching. The highlight was the playing of the 007 James Bond Theme.
London On Awakening
I am blogging from bed. Janet is still asleep. I was thinking of last
night. When you are hungry a pub is the best place to fill yourself. But
pubs are a two edged sword. First, the smoke is horrendous and I kept
putting my hand over my nose, and secondly they are noisey --maybe 120
decibels. One needs noise cancelling headphones. It is so loud that you
can not hear the one across the table.but the food is GOOD and CHEAP.
What is going on with any of you? Over a 100 people a day read this
journal. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Christ Church Oxford
of Oxford University and its 39 colleges. The church goes back to the
14th century and is lovely. The picture enclosed is the dining room
where Harry Potter was made. One of the stained glass windows is
dedicated to Alice in Wonderland which was written here. How is it
possible that Alice, the Lord of the Rings, and the Lion and the
Wardrobe all come from the same city. Maybe there is something magical
about Oxford. On the return trip through London we passed James Barrie's
House, the author of Peter Pan.
So it has been a magical day. Good eating, castles, knights, bowler
hats, and the majic of Mr. Harry Potter. What delightful visions. Maybe
tonight I will dream of sugarplumbs or santa claus or elfs. After a good
heated bath then snoozes. I bid thee goodnight.
Alderminister Notes from Guide Brry
The bell at alderminister, a former monastery. Before Henry VIII. 36
million sheep in Britain. 30 million cows, let the train take the
strain. Crashing waves and inlets. Delightful territory. Dark and
dismal. A mongrol race, one reason our colorful nature. The treasury of
whole world (British musuem).
$15 Cracker Barrel lunch cost 34 pounds, or $68 in American money.
Eating continues to be a spending opportunity. Certainly this is a once
in a lifetime deal so eating becomes a necessity. All our host can talk
of is food. It rapidly accentuates hearty appetite.
To Warwick Castle
answered he said, "VIRGINS." The language by our guide is awesome. It
has given me renewed appreciation for the King's English.
The castle at Warwick was built in 1068. That history is astounding.
What a well perserved facility. (Did I tell you that no one ever has any
Slain dragons, ghosts, royalty, and spectacular views accompany the
journey plus thousands of school kids visiting. "If they are English
kids they will be well ordered. If French they will be disorderly," says
We concluded with a trip through the Rose Garden.
Euridite Visitors to Warwick Castle
people," said driver Barry. Very nice. Very Nice !! "La la la," says
Barry as he grabs a spot of tea.
Pigeons roam to and fro throughout the enclosed bus station. One has to
even duck when a particularly speedy bird leaps through the enclosed
There is plenty of food but we are afraid to get any for fear bus will
leave without us. Barry seems to be a delightful chap, whistling and la
la laing everywhere as he greets potential customers.
We are gate 5 and Magic of London is several gates down. The most
smiling people I have seen in a while. Guess everyone else is tired of
"Fantastic fantastic," says Barry to the Argentinians entering the bus.
Welcome. A marvelous day is ahead.
Mood and Feel of London
Some have asked about the spirit of London. Each morning as I buy coffee
I face Westminster Chapel. It was founded in 1840 in what was then the
poorest section of London. As I face it, realizing how difficult it is
to sustain it today, I realize the hardiness of London's people. A
desire to help, like yesterday when I fell someone was immediately there
asking "are you ok." The prayers of the chapel people still go forward
London is a speedy city. The majority of people use the tube, the
subway. At work hours people hang on for dear life to push themselves
on. Mostly white, dress clothers, and a back pack. A surprising number
have white IPODS. Radio stations are virtually useless. I have yet to
hear a weather report. Everyday is the same, wet and windy, 55 degrees,
and the sun will peak out at least twice a day. Hale spirits are needed
to buffet the daily weather.
Like our interstates, a rail impropriety stops the tube and all are late
to work. They handle such disasters with a hearty spirit. I believe they
have much more patience than Americans.
Lots of people smoke, especially the younger ladies, and when eating in
pubs lots of laughter and noise accompany the smoke and ale.
They are a reverend people, especially related to their heritage. They
appreciate the history and understand the past much better than us.
Today we are off to Warwick Castle, Stratford Upon Avon, The Cotswolds,
and Oxford. Weather is chilly and cloudy.
London Journal Wednesday
Date: Mon, 14 May 2007 08:48:29 -0500
Hope you have fun.
Go to Marks and Spensers Dept. store and you can buy takeout food very
JIM I did exactly as you said. Unfortunately I have developed the habit
of falling in love with there freshly squezzed orange juice and have to
buy so bottles a day. Delicious.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Why Not !
Why not forward my blog to friends? Big toe is numb from walking. Going
to Oxford tomorrow.
MY BLOG :
Everyone has a free paper that they try to force on you. Headlines today
1. To a girl. Aged 4. Madeline McCann who mysteriously disappeared. A
neighbor, Robert Murat, who supposedly was so helpful to police has
become the prime suspect. That is all that is on the telli.
2. Lots of Fayd news. Lawsuits to be done. Everyone out for more news
about Diana and Dodi. Reminds me of Elvis sightings.
3. Tony Blair is news also. George Galloway responds to this question by
columist Jane Oddy. "SO WHAT DO YOU THINK OF TONY BLAIR'S RESIGNATION?"
He resonds, "Good riddance to bad rubbish. He's put us in a very
dangerous place in the world, as one of the most hated countries on the
Earth. His legacy is a four-letter word --IRAQ--and will be carved on
his political gravestone, his actual gravestone, and any reference in
Well guess that is enough headlines for today. Ate at McDonalds tonight.
Now it is time for the Dukes of Hazard.
Finished Britist Museum and saw the grandeau of Ur, Rome, Geece, etc.
Fell down 3 stairs and scratched knees. Thankful it was not worse. It
was interesting that more of the Parthenon was here than in Athens. Why
does one get the feeling that the British have stolen much of this
stuff. Or maybe it would have been lost if it was not for their
protection. What do you think?
Also I saw a portion of the Temple of Aretimis which I hunted
unsuccessfully at Ephesus. It supposedly burned the night Alexander the
Great was born.
Walked over a mile to the British Library to see the Sacred exhibit. My
favorite was the Codex Sinaiticus, the Great Bible, and the Lindsfarne
About 5 hours a day is what I can walk without exhaustion. Maybe we will
make Harrods. Guess who owns Harrods?
Monday, May 14, 2007
It was the best meal so far and one of the cheapest. A delicacy of
anchovies and peppironi with garlic toast and chocolate cake with ice
cream. Filling (see picture).
We became concerned over Paddington Bear. Janet said he lived in
Victoria Station and I said Paddington Station. After an internet seach
we found him living at Paddington Station.
You ask about my eyes. They are tired. Somewhere on the journey I lost
my artifial teardrops. I have tried several drug stores and each one
just sold them out. Other eye drops have warnings about eye surgery
which I think I had recently to repair the torn retina.
British druggists all tend to be from India. At Books Etc. nextdoor to
our restaurant I noted that there was not a religious section. There was
a Mind, Soul, and Body section with new age stuff but no C.S. Lewis or
I found 2 interesting books: Jewish Journeys and Waiting for Snow in
Havana. There were many travel writers I was unfamiliar with.
The sun came out at 6:43 pm.
An Email from my cousin Al in Louisana
Hello Dan, We often talk fondly about your recent visit. I know that I
don't take time to visit my eastern relatives like I should, but I
change that. Juanda Bird had a birthday last Friday and a great
Mother's Day. I took her to Sweet Fire and Ice (restaurant) and the
maitre 'D sang Happy Birthday to her. I bought coursages for My Mother,
Juanda, and Mother-In-Law. Buck Brown is getting a lot more comfortable
at Mother's house. He is a sensitive Pit Bull.
Tell Cousin Janet Hello.
What are Londoners Thinking
With much news about the new Prime Minster I thought this was an
interesting article showing how politics is similar on both sides of the
Fw: London Journal
NOTE--gee isn't it awesome reading notes from friends while in LONDON !
Hi Dan & Janet,
It is so awesome to read of your blog and see the pictures. It's almost
as if we were on this trip with you.:) I pray that as you go, God will
open all the doors and provide extra unknown provision and delights for
you. It is so awesome to see God's hand on you as you go about your
days. We are so thankful for your friendship and your prayers.
We've purchased a house here in the Dallas area on April 29; so, we are
in the process of moving things from Houston to here every other week.
It is quite the chore! We still have at least one more trip. Our house
in Houston has not yet sold and that is still a prayer need. We met a
wonderful couple two weeks ago who were VERY interested, but they had a
house to sell in Arkansas. I'm praying they get a good contract on
their house and then, in turn, can put a contract on ours. But, really,
I pray God's will. I pray to see His hand as we Wait for answered
Dan, is your eyesight okay now? What happened or do you know? We pray
you are seeing better than ever.
I must go now as I am at work. It was such a joy to get your email and
your journal this morning. Thank you.
London to our hotel, this in comparison with almost 2 hours out there.
Just lay down a while. Need to recoop. Now am messed up. Not as much
progress as I hope for. Thought we mifght make British Museum today. No
such luck. Notice traffic and rain outside Tower of London.
is frustating when one does not know where you are going. And this
morning the tube track ripped so we had to walk in rain and find a tower
of London bus.
We have visited the White Tower so far, the palace where first king
lived and the place where Anne Bolyne lost her head (see accompanying
axe). Our progress is slower than expected with the thunderous rain.
Sunday, May 13, 2007
service at Westminister Chapel. Everyone was silent at the Abbey
listening to the organ's prelude that ended in a great cresendo as rhe
choir arrived. Ones whole boady was touched as the organ's base music
swam through our body.
"This is a place for prayer and meditation," said the program. I was
touched by the beautiful music and quiet. Three men in their 70s,
wearing red robes with blue collars sat in the 3 chairs next to the
choir master. They slept soundly through the sermon then awakened enough
to take up the offering.
After church we walked along the Thames, went to Traflagar Square, and
found a shortcut through St. James Park to our hotel. We hunted 84
Charing Cross Road to no avaible. It is one of my favorite books. Our
legs were given out. A wonderful bath and now it is time for sleep.
(Pictues are of me at Traflagar Square and Winston Churchill)
Ale and Pie
Ate at Ale and Pie after Evensong at Westminister Abbey, a restaurant in
the sanctuarthousehotel.com my first encounter with Shepherd's Pie.
Delicious. More about Abbey later.
We overslept, from 9 pm last night until 9:30 am. After finding a small
restaurant and buying a subway pass it was to late to make Saint Paul's
Cathedral so we went next door to G. Morgan Campbell's Church,
Westminster Chapel. The church was built in the 1840s and we were
greeted by 2 tiered balcony, a fairly full first floor and praise music.
As an evangelical church it was the same as our own Clearview Baptist.
They had a visiting evangelist from Oklahoma who was pretty good but
after listening to him preach for an hour and 20 minutes we left. (Even
the regular pastor had to leave early to catch a plane.)
I was most intrigued that the 400 year anniversary of the settling of
Jamestown was prevelant on the British mindset. It seems the British are
extremely proud of starting the colonies. It was the pride of our Mother
country. And just think even Queen Elizabeth came to our country to
It is pouring down rain. Our umbrellas have come in handy. Maybe there
is a time for a short nap before Evensong at Westminister Abbey.
Saturday, May 12, 2007
Fw: Re: Fw: London Journal
(Steve wrote The Way of the Dreamcatcher, a wonderful biography of
Hi Dan (& Janet):
Have happy travels throughout London! Your trip sounds like lots of
fun, despite the hotel shortcomings. Hope you get to see everything you
want to. One of these days I'll make it out to Briton too.
Out here it's almost Finals time for my students. Got five classes,
three different colleges, lots of running around. The beach (five
minutes away by car) is a blessing.
Weather out here is cold & foggy too---very inconsistent weather year,
thus far, for California.
Look forward to late August when my new book comes out. Robert Lax
features in it (again). I'll send you a promotional flyer in June, and
a copy to review, if you'd like.
Cheerio, & Regards to Big Ben!
Peace & Light,
Prayers & Blessings,
Fw: Hello from Belvin
Note: The Reverend Belvin and I use to travel together. He told me about
Mrs. Crabtree, a one legged genius at the Teddy Roosevelt Museum in Las
Vegas, New Mexico. I put the story on the well and forgot the URL.
Dan and Janet,
Thank you so very much for including us in your daily journal from
London. We were so excited when we saw it this morning. It is so
exciting that you have this opportunity.
We think of you folks often just don't do anything about it. Recently
our oldest grandson, Taylor, was doing a report on his family tree and
speciailizing on his "Pop" (Belvin). We referred him to your journals on
the internet and he was overwhelmed at your writings. He got all caught
up in them and used the info about Pop in his report. We were with him
last night and he was telling us about reading your info and how much it
meant to him. Thanks for helping him to see the importance of writing
down what is going on his life.
When you all return let's try to get together more often. We always
enjoy your company and have such fun visiting with you both.
Bel is still at the Nashville Rescue Mission every day. He loves his
work. He will be 70 in June - getting to be an old man. LOL
We will look forward to your daily London info.
Love to you both,
Belvin and Barbara
Friday, May 11, 2007
A woman magically appears, organizes kids in parade style, charges
ahead. All is well. The husband smiles. The kids frown.
A lone man with 3 children under the age of 3 play. With artful eye he
chases them, allows them to traumatize other passengers, and listens to
them squell and yell. Entertainment? Maybe, or maybe its a disaster. Has
he no wife? Did she die? Is she meeting him here to take her turn with
We have over a 4 hour wait. All the white painted rocking chairs are
full. Passengers immobilize from planes in various states of disarray,
often running to the next stop. Everyone seems to be talking on a
cellphone with bluetooths stuck in their ears. The perplexed father
shakes his head in disbelief.
Looks like average high in London is 60F and average low 50F. Also it
looks like rain 80 percent of the time. Maybe that is why there are so
Checking in at an airport becomes more complicated every time I try.
Thursday, May 10, 2007
Enough for one day. Suitcases packed. Fairly heavy coat. No gifts for
people we meet. Perhaps tomorrow I can get postcards, maybe of the Grand
Old Opera or Opryland Hotel. Music City USA. Home of Melinda Doolittle.
Need a hat of somekind, maybe a baseball hat. Bet they do not know about
the Atlanta Braves in London, but probably my neighbors George Jones and
Pacman Jones. Did you know the Jones Boys were neighbors? Sweet Dreams.
All journeys have their moments. The boarding passes don't print. We do
not have enough time to get to airport. If there is an accident we will
not make it. We are short with each other. I have lost the book that
tells how to make the camera work. The weather is not favorable. The cat
does not come when called. The dog bites. There are too many
commercials. I don't have a Mother's Day car for wife. I am sweating,
tired of always knowing someone in the obituaries, still struggling with
left eye vision, waiting for Godot. LAST MINUTES !
London - 1 day to go
Well I have one day to go before leaving. Am ready !!!! I hope you will check back as I travel. Hopefully I will be able to put up some blogs from London, especially via internet cafes. Or maybe the sidekick 3 will surprise me. Even tomorrow I am sure I will blog a little from airports until I leave the country. So, where will I show up next. You Never Know! But, don't forget to follow.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
PREPARING FOR A JOURNEY TO LONDON, ENGLAND
PREPARING FOR THE JOURNEY TO LONDON, ENGLAND
We leave this Friday and will be gone for a week to visit London. Plans are progressing. We have a hotel, an airline ticket, my t-mobile phone will work with text messaging, the visa card has finally began to work (advice: when you get a new visa card do not buy gas as the first thing since that is the first thing people do when they steal your card), and I have mapped the journey pretty well.
To Do Items:
I want to see Westminister Abbey, the graves of T.S. Eliot and Lancelot Andrewes (one of the translators of the King James Bible and also a great devotional writer), the place where Anne Bolyn was beheaded, and the Codex Sinaiaticus – the oldest Bible with the Old and New Testaments in it (from the 3rd century AD).
I go searching for the spirit of a place. “Travel should be a process of gathering knowledge about ourselves,” said someone.
And most importantly, be prepared for the unexpected !! Who knows maybe I will see the Queen (ha).
Getting away for all of us can be a needed experience, hopefully a time of rejuvenation, learning, and a renewed calling for our lives.
May all of our journeys be meaningful !
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
Many Thoughts on Tuesday
Pancakes for breakfast. Too much sugar. Too many thoughts. A friend's
eyes sink into darkness, a marriage is ripped apart. Bonds picks up
speed. Everyone is dressed in white. A heart breaks. The bride skips
around the room. The baby waits quietly. The sons grieve. Are my plans
straight, the journey ready to begin? In the end is our beginning.
Monday, May 07, 2007
Plans proceed. I have been reading The Christian Traveler's Companion to
Western Europe. Lots of London religious details that will be helpful.
Brother Taqdh what happened to you?
Friday, May 04, 2007
Sometimes the Journey----
Sometimes the journey becomes something else. A new beginning, a
dissatisfaction with the way things are, even a cry for help. It "may be
a realization that certain areas of our lives have become intolerable,"
says Joseph Dispenza.
My favorite travel story is Anne Morrow Lindberg's A Gift from the Sea.
I re-read it each time I travel to the ocean. She goes to the beach
naked to lifes achievements, picks up seashells, misses her children and
husband, but finds a totally new perspective on life. That is The Gift,
the gift given by a sacred restlessness.
A journey begins with a destiny, a call. Moses to the promised land,
Mary with announcement of child, and Paul with a blinding light followed
Where does my journey begin? A vague restlessness, a tiredness of
routine, an awareness of a futility of effort?
In preparation for going to London next week, I stumbled through the
travel section of a local Barnes and Noble. After discouting the Sex
Lives of Canables and The Art of a Tangerine I bought a non-fiction book
on a Walk to Canterbury.
Along with my Rick Steves memorabilia and my London Moleskine Journal, I
have at least begun the journey. My studies indicate that London is
overwhelming. I can't do everything so the journey becomes a selection
of personal enticements such as a worship service at Westminster Abbey,
or T.S. Eliot's grave, and perhaps a high tea.
Last night we watched Queen, an excellent movie describing how each of
us can become out of touch with what is really important.
Packing will begin soon. I have begun the list. I need to minimize books
and personal electronics like this sidekick 2, and bring a good camera
and a personal journal small enough for a pocket. I wonder, "Must I wear
a coat and tie for a worship service at Westminster Abbey?"
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
Merton Retreat PSALM
Psalm 0.9, Beta 1
Hymn to God, on Thomas Merton retreat
Glory be to God for coffee
And for dark, quiet, chilly mornings to drink it.
I do not always invite you into that silence, Lord.
Yet you await me there with patience,
Willing always to take even a maybe or simply not a no and turn it to yes.
Lead me to yes.
Teach me to invite and welcome,
Bring me into Your Presence in the silence.