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Showing posts from June, 2016

Pain is a Great Teacher!

When you are walking a pilgrimage of 70 miles, you learn so much about yourself, God and creation.  One of the best teachers is pain.  During my pilgrimage walking El Camino de Santiago, I was given a unique opportunity to walk and learn through my pain.                 My pain began before I left Texas in the middle of my move.  I did not have time to properly prepare for the journey, so I chose to wear my hiking boots to work as preparation.   I work at a church that has many stairway passages.  I decided it would be good to opt for the stairs every chance I could.  Yet, I had not learned my lesson from pain so I pounded away toe to toe up and down the stairs.  Soon walking my dog around the neighborhood resulted in excruciating pain in my left knee.  I was dumbfounded at this pain.  Rather than lash out at God about why this was happening to me, I asked Him the what I could learn from pain that threatened my participation in the pilgrimage I had planned for five ye…

Vision of God's Love

A mother’s love is the closest taste of God’s love for us.  I’ve always known this, but I have never experienced it as poignantly as I did last weekend when I visited my son who is incarcerated in a Texas state prison during A Day with Mom provided by a very special ministry.  I attended because it was a chance for my son to have real-world pizza, and he did not want to miss this rare occasion to escape the drudgery of a normal Saturday.  I could not let him down even though I had a wicked strep throat and was not up to driving the 2.5 hours, waiting for the 2 hours between my arrival, processing, and actually being reunited with my son, a 5.5 hour visit and the trip home.  The good thing was that he felt very tired too and so we were a pair just enjoying a chance to be in one another’s presence for that amount of time.  As one of the newest on the unit, one man in white told me how impressed he was with Ben.  He knew that Ben’s ability to keep a strong sense of himsel…
The Joy of Weakness

If there is anything I learned on the Pilgrimage it is the joy of weakness.  It is essential to our spiritual growth to grasp our utter weakness.  I looked over my photos from the Pilgrimage and this one of me laying down my burden at the foot of the Iron cross with the Priest (spiritual guide) looking on before we began our official start, best displays the wonder of my weakness inviting God’s strength.  The devotion I read that day stated:  God, getting closer to man, weakens him.  That seems to be a strange concept to understand from a loving God.  The scripture the devotion was referring to was the Rich Young Ruler who came to ask Jesus how he could inherit eternal life (Mark10:17-27).  He came to Jesus in search of greater strength.  Jesus wanted him to gain what he was seeking.  The way Jesus told him to find strength was by willingly becoming totally weak. Before I started my pilgrimage I had done what Jesus told the Rich Young Ruler to do. I did not reluctant…

Pilgrimage

Pilgrimage                 For the past two Mondays I have been on a Pilgrimage in Spain.  I have wanted to walk the Camino de Santiago for many years.  After my friend Karen and I celebrated our 50th birthdays by spending three days in a luxurious Spa, we decided to walk the Way of St. James (English Translation) to celebrate our 55th birthdays.  Brian researched and bought me a guidebook.  Karen and I talked about how we would prepare for a 500 mile walk.  In between the plan for the pilgrimage and the actual walking the Way, everything changed.  Brian passed away and I began to work full-time (difficult to take off the 30-45 days that are necessary), I remarried (difficult to leave your new husband for that amount of time) and it became apparent that our pilgrimage, if it were to happen, needed to be adjusted.  Rather than walk 500 miles residing in hostels with group bunk beds and facilities, carrying everything on our backs; we opted for a tour that included 4-star hotels and qua…