Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transparent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world. ~ Sara Ban Breathnach

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Gather Up the Crumbs - VII - More Examples of Macrina's Crumbs

I have been doing a little more thinking about my crumbs, and the story of God providing manna for the ancient Israelites came to mind. Exodus 16:10-20. And, in my looking back, I learned something new...and it isn't even 8:00 in the morning yet!
Taken from a study on manna, which the teacher called,
Angel Food.
" the morning there was a layer of dew all over the camp. When the layer of dew had lifted, there on the wilderness ground was a fine flaky something, fine as frost on the ground. The Israelites took one look and said to one another,man-hu (What is it?). They had no idea what it was." (Eugene Peterson, The Message)
 19 Moses said to them, "Don't leave any of it until morning."
 20 But they didn't listen to Moses. A few of the men kept back some of it until morning. It got wormy and smelled bad. (The Message)

I wait for the whole muffin, yet,
I can be nourished by the crumbs.
One, I had always envisioned small loaves of "bread" as the manna.  When reading this passage in the past, I completely blew over "fine as frost on the ground" because I already had an image in my mind. Looking at this picture I saw .... CRUMBS!

I thought about verses 19-20 and I wondered:..."If I save my crumbs, waiting to eat when I have a plate full or a whole loaf, they will become moldy and smelly.  So, my lesson, is to pay attention! To gather the crumbs God drops along my path each day so that I will be nourished daily rather than waiting until I "need" the nourishment....

An OLD Gospel song....Feed Me Jesus...

Yesterday, I journaled about Macrina's 1. Love for trees. 2. Moments of beauty. 3. Sin and weakness in her life. and 4. Being able to recognize and admit that she is wrong.  I still smile writing the fourth crumb.  Today...a few more crumbs of manna....

  • Lonely as a barren tree in an
    empty field on a cold winter's day.
    • My loneliness attracts a magnet I am drawn...longing to be one with God.
    • The separateness I keep choosing makes me desperately homesick...
    • My loneliness blesses me...
      • because it shows me that I'm not enough all by myself,
      • because it encourages me to allow myself to be vulnerable
      • because it won't let me hide in the illusion of my self-sufficiency.
    • If you're hungry for growth, spend time with your loneliness.
    • ...each person you meet is more like a loaf of uncut bread.
    • Each person is a lot like you, deep and not yet fully explored, scared and beautiful, fragile and strong.
    • People are nourishing. When your depth meets the depth of another...what a sacrament that can be!
    • It is possible for me to take my closest relationships for granted.  Yet, my heart cannot live without intimacy.  
    • I need special people to whom I can be show my soul.
    • Relationships must be nurtured, nourished and celebrated.
    • Next time I am walking through a crowd/group of the mall, downtown, along a trail at a popular state park.....pause and see:
      • the people as individuals
      • people who share the earth with me
      • the Body of Christ with a common God.
      • Your pathway may be different, but the love of God has for each is the same.
    • Bless them, then, by seeing them.
      • If Jesus' look was enough to bless and heal others, mine can be as well.
      • When I dim my lights for an oncoming car, pray for them.
        • Let your light-dimming become 
          • a gift of love
          • a sacrament
          • a meeting
          • a moment saved, saved because you were there.
Wow....I am thinking back to Joyce Rupp's thoughts within The Cup of Life about blessing and being a blessing.  I sometimes make it much more difficult than it need be.  It is all about changing myself, my inner self, which things sends out some different "karma" into the universe.  Like a small stone dropped into a still ripples out in ways I may never know or even appreciate.

  • CRITICISM: ( I go!!)
  • Wonderful eye-opener of something I often do not like!
    • Macrina refers to criticism as a "guest" because always when she is criticized that word of criticism, welcome or unwelcome, moves in on me, sets up a tent in my heart, looks me square in the dye, and says, "Well, what do you think? True or false?"
    • When I am criticized, I can learn from it...the choice is mine.
    • Sometimes if I look deep enough, I can find just a little truth, so little that it could have been missed had I not taken it to prayer.
    • Why should I refuse to learn just because the gift comes in a package not so nicely wrapped?
    • The freeing thing is to be able to have the humility to look at myself with loving, microscopic eyes and then go on from there.  This is all a part of my potential to let everything nourish me.
Oh, me to grow to the point I can hold criticism without feeling unloved, disliked, ....!!!
    • Wisdom comes from listening to life.
    • Sometimes the food we need is found in lowly places.
    • Until we learn to sit at one another's feet, we will starve at our lavish banquet tables.

There is a lot here for me to reflect on.  When I finish reading and journaling about Macrina's crumbs...I want to spend time reflecting on the crumbs that nourish me.

Some of the things Macrina has identified....Yes! These same things have given me nourishment, have blessed me...but I was not always aware that this was so in that moment.  Yesterday, I wrote about the practice of The Examen.  Here is another link from Loyola Press on The Daily Examen. 

The Daily Examen......

This is a version of the five-step Daily Examen that St. Ignatius practiced.
1. Become aware of God’s presence.
2. Review the day with gratitude.
3. Pay attention to your emotions.
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it.
5. Look toward tomorrow.
Simply one more tool....
Fr. Dennis Hamm, SJ, a scripture professor at Creighton University, calls the Daily Examen “rummaging for God.” He likens it to “going through a drawer full of stuff, feeling around, looking for something that you are sure must be there.” That’s an accurate description of what it’s like to pray the Daily Examen. We look back on the previous day, rummaging through the “stuff,” and finding God in it. We know he is there.
I like the image of "rummaging for God."  I even discovered a book with that title! 
Many things to hold....many crumbs scattered along my path.  So much nourishment when I am present and notice...
Spirit, today, help me to open the eyes of my heart, so that I might be truly present to God within this world.  I ask this in the name of my Risen Savior!! AMEN!

Many Blessings ~ Sandi

No comments:

Post a Comment