October 19, 2021

01

Great Blue Heron 06 08/24/2019 Oil Paint Rendered — Swan Lake Iris Gardens, Sumter, South Carolina
Jesus raised the dead
and left the dead 
to bury the dead.

Jesus cursed an innocent fig tree
for not having fruit out of season,
and forgave a woman guilty
of adultery.

Jesus said, "Come to me
all who are heavy-laden,
and I will give you rest."
And he said, "Depart from me!
I never knew you evildoers!"

Jesus said, "Blessed are you
if you know what you are doing,
but if you don't know what you are doing,
you are accursed and a transgressor
of the Law."
And he said, "Father, forgive them,
for they know not what they do!"

Jesus is like the spirit,
who is like the wind,
that blows where it will.

We never can tell what Jesus
will say, or do, next.

May it be so said of us all!

May we all be as free as Jesus was
to do what the situation requires,
never mind what we did in the 
last situation,
or will do in the next one.

Consistency and predictability 
are not required,
and are hindrances and restraints
when it comes to the wind blowing where it will!

To be what each situation needs
is to be open to what is happening there,
and to what is called for there,
and to act spontaneously,
compassionately,
to do what is called for,
exactly as called for,
regardless of what that is,
in season and out of season
throughout the time left for living!

–0–

02

Blue Ridge Pastoral 04/03/2005 Oil Paint Rendered — Blue Ridge Parkway, Blowing Rock, North Carolina
What needs to be done here and now,
in this moment,
in this situation?

Start with that. 
Do it as it needs to be done.
Then, move on to the next thing
that needs to be done.

And so on, 
throughout the day.

Do it again tomorrow.

And the day after that.

For as long as there are days.

–0–

03

Peach Orchard Road 01/14/2006 Oil Paint Rendered — Anne Springs Close Greenway, Fort Mill, South Carolina
"Turning the light around"
is an old Taoist phrase,
emphasizing the need to 
stop looking outside,
"out there"
for what is found only inside,
"in here."

"The path that can be discerned
as a path,
is not a reliable path" (Martin Palmer).

"They shall not say, 'Lo here!'
or 'Lo, There!' for what you seek
lies within you" (Jesus of Nazareth).

"The darkness is the cradle of the light"
(Rumi).

"What you seek lies far in the back,
in the darkest corner,
of the cave you most don't want to enter"
(Joseph Campbell).

"The stone the builders reject
is the chief cornerstone" (Jesus of Nazareth).

"Why don't you judge for yourselves
what is right?" (Jesus of Nazareth).

We have to empty ourselves of all we 
think we know,
in order to know all that is worth knowing.

The Silence is the source of all that is.

No one can tell you what you know.
You have to realize that for yourself.

Sit still.
Be quiet.
Pay attention
to what arises in the silence
that catches your eye,
that calls your name.

See what comes up
to guide your boat
on its path through the sea.

–0–

04

Cherry Blossoms 02 03/25/2016 Oil Paint Rendered — Indian Land, South Carolina
Sit still.

Be quiet.

Be present, here, now.

Be open.

Alert.

Aware.

Attentive.

Wait.

Watch.

Available for what needs
an audience with you.

Regularly.

Throughout each day.

For as much time
as you have available
to devote to the practice.

Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

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