I worried a lot. Will the garden grow, will the rivers
flow in the right direction, will the earth turn
as it was taught, and if not how shall
I correct it?
Was I right, was I wrong, will I be forgiven,
can I do better?
Will I ever be able to sing, even the sparrows
can do it and I am, well,
Is my eyesight fading or am I just imagining it,
am I going to get rheumatism,
Finally I saw that worrying had come to nothing.
And gave it up. And took my old body
and went out into the morning,
and sang.— Mary Oliver
The day before I headed up the coast for a three-day retreat, a time to rest from the rigors of Holy Week and Easter and to recharge for the demands of the coming months — napping, reading and staring at the ocean — I came across this quote posted by Anne Lamott as part of her reflections on turning 61.
“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.”— Anne Lamott
The master in the art of living makes little distinction
between his work and his play,
his labor and his leisure,
his mind and his body,
his education and his recreation,
his love and his religion.
He hardly knows which is which.
He simply pursues his vision of excellence
in whatever he does,
leaving others to decide whether he is
working or playing.
To him he is always doing both.— Zen Buddhist Text
Be a friend to yourself. And that will be magic in your life. Other people will see your goodness when you have seen it first.— Marianne Williamson
God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.
These are the words we dimly hear:
You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.
Flare up like a flame
and make big shadows I can move in.
Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don’t let yourself lose me.
Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.
Give me your hand.— Rainer Maria Rilke
Imagine how it is for God to have this kind of time with you.— My spiritual director on an eight-day silent retreat