Tuesday, August 12, 2014

sand, surf, and holy moments

I returned last night from a long weekend on the Texas coast with all my family and with a group of dear friends, many of whom I’ve known since my days—500 years ago!—as an undergraduate attending the University Catholic Center at the University of Texas in Austin.

Being at the beach for me is always and foremost a tangible, undeniable glimpse into God’s presence in all of creation, and in this present moment. it is in the sand and the waves that I inevitably touch, however briefly, the mysterious essence of eternity.

In that sense, these past few days on the coast were no different.

Yet like all other things in my life right now, even in this most familiar place, being with these most familiar and intimate friends and family—everything seemed foreign, different, even “off.”   

I am aware that, the truth is, it is *I* who feel strange and different. I am the one who is “off.” 

What was such a blessing about this weekend is that it didn't matter. I allowed myself to be off, to feel strange and different in front of my family and friends. I acknowledged this unfamiliar and unusual state where my heart dwells right now. And I knew that I was (I am!) still loved and accepted, as I am, where I am.

What a holy moment!

Each of us is loved by God with a limitless, unconditioned, and unconditional love that we can never destroy or even diminish. We are loved into existence; cherished in our existence; affirmed absolutely in death and beyond. This love is independent of our merit or demerits. Nothing whatsoever can separate us from this love. For it is the breadth; it is the length; it is the height and it is the depth—there is nowhere beyond it, above it or below it. It is All: the limitless ocean that encompasses our tiny, threatened, fragile yet definitely precious self.

This is not merely impersonal, protective benevolence but a love that gives self, that offers inconceivable intimacy and that seeks reciprocity. We can never define or draw a line around what God will do for each one of us. We are exposed to the infinite. Against this truth what does our sense of impotence matter?”
                                                                                            ~Sister Ruth Burrows, O.C.D.

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