Saturday, February 21, 2015

Whining, or Whinging, as the British might say

The whine: Every time I get a little overheated, I break out in an itchy rash. Even a fairly short walk on the bike path today, a breezy Spring afternoon, caused the rash. Here's a photo of the rash on my arm. It comes up all over - my chest, stomach, back, I think even my scalp, because that itches, too.

It goes away after about a half hour of cooling off, or when I take a shower. But in the meantime. it's misery.

So, I know this pales in comparison to many, many problems. But what a bother.

Now, on to counting my blessings. On this walk I saw many wonderful signs of spring. Green grass, blue skies, buds all over, poppies, birds, bright yellow mustard on the hills, dappled sun on the creek. There were also little boys and girls on the backs of their parents, or their parent's bikes, or riding their own bikes.

I suppose not too long from now the green will be dried up and brown, and the water will be gone, but it is lovely to enjoy for now.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015


-- Parker J. Palmer
Things do not always work out so well, of course. History is full of tragically failed visions of possibility, and the more profound the vision, the more likely we are to fall short of achieving it. But even here, Merton has a word of hope for us, a paradoxical word, of course:
"…do not depend on the hope of results. …you may have to face the fact that your work will be apparently worthless and even achieve no result at all, if not perhaps results opposite to what you expect. As you get used to this idea, you start more and more to concentrate not on the results, but on the value, the rightness, the truth of the work itself."
As long as we are wedded to “effectiveness” we will take on smaller and smaller tasks, for they are the only ones with which we can get results. If we want to witness to important but impossible values like love, truth and justice, there must be a standard that trumps effectiveness. The name of that standard is “faithfulness.” At the end of the road, I will not be asking about outcomes. I’ll be asking if I was faithful to my gifts, to the needs I saw around me, to the ways in which my gifts might meet those needs, to “the truth of the work itself.”


It's been a while since I've written in any of my blogs. I've been demotivated lately and I'm not exactly sure why. But tonight it felt like a good idea to set things up in my bed and write. I'm planning to write about some of the books I've read recently and then I'll see what else I feel like. Or maybe go to bed. Wherever my heart leads me.