God is our answer & we meet Him, spirit to spirit, when we engage in the gift of sacred pausing. We need places that are larger than the sum of their parts in order to remind us that we are all larger than the sum of our earthly body, mind, & spirit. It is our prayer that all God’s people will make time to meet God in those sacred moments & receive His gift of healing.
It is because water & wind are Holy creations, that we find in the Holy Bible wave after wave of parables in the form of metaphors related to water & wind, that reveal to us ways to journey through the various circumstances we may encounter as we move through life. Each parable is a call from Jesus to His followers to pause & engage in sacred conversation with God, in order to stop the noise of fear & chaos that occurs in earthly life & to heal. Through the practice of engaging in times of sacred pause, Jesus models to His followers the way to expand their vision to include God in order to move through the lost, stuck situations in their lives & thus to move forward, transcending the sum of their body, mind & spirit as they absorb healing holiness & deep interconnection with God.
For myself, as I think of the metaphors of water & wind, I can’t help but think of the strong messages that come to us through the metaphor of sailing a boat on the waters, for the experience of sailing frequently offers us the answer to the question of how we can regain our focus, balance & vision when we are stuck or lost on our journey through life. A sailboat consists of a vessel, two sails & the rudder that steers the boat. The sailboat moves through the water when the wind fills its sails. Though the sailor cannot control the wind, they can adjust their sails which affects the direction they go in. On a day when the wind is perfect, the sails just need to open & the world is full of beauty, as the boat moves gracefully through the living water. On those days it really does feel like the very breath of God is moving the boat through the water on a smooth unencumbered path. However, as every sailor knows, when they are journeying on the water in a sailboat, they can be moving along smoothly with the wind, with no problem nor indication of any problem at all & then all of a sudden, the wind just stops & the boat becomes “dead in the water”, which is a nautical term which means it is totally immobile. Through no fault of their own, the sails of the boat lay limp against the mast, empty of any wind. In that moment the journey itself is put on pause. When the wind stops, no matter what the person does, they cannot make the boat move. Sailors often despair as they realize that they are powerless to control their journey. The practice of sacred pausing that Jesus taught His followers & that leads to transcendent healing, is different than simply stopping & waiting for a change. Sacred pausing opens space for our hearts & minds to hear God’s voice & thus to transcend the tumultuous situations & to begin a healed journey that embraces the whole picture, which includes interconnection with God. It is through the sacred pause moments that we come to realize that though the wind may appear to have stopped completely, though we may not be able to detect them, the current of the wind & water, is always moving. There are always ripples on the water that let us know God will never leave us. His Holy Spirit is ever present & transcends our knowing.
Sailing is a metaphor for our lives. The same is true for all of us as we journey through our lives, when things outside of our control cause us to get stuck in place & we lose our vision, balance & focus. It could be due to some event: a death of a loved one, the loss of a job, a serious diagnosis, a flood or wildfire that destroys our home & the land, a pandemic occurs, etc. Things happen on our journey that stop us & cause us to pause & to put everything on hold. Initially, I think most of us would agree that when people are forced to put their journey on hold & to pause, they generally feel pausing is a useless way of spending time & they feel angry, frustrated & helpless. However, when they open their eyes, ears & heart to God through a scared pause, they receive God’s healing grace & are able to resume a journey of whole living.
As children of God who are in this world but not of this world, we are often unexplainably drawn to pause at the water’s edge to simply dwell in what is larger than the water itself, a place where God our creator transcends our earthly worries, fears & struggles & frees us from our insatiable need to define. God is our answer & we meet Him, spirit to spirit, when we engage in the gift of sacred pausing. We need places that are larger than the sum of their parts in order to remind us that we are all larger than the sum of our earthly body, mind, & spirit. It is our prayer that all God’s people will make time to meet God in those sacred moments & receive His gift of healing. When you pause & look for the ripples in the water, you will transcend your earthly vision & know God is ever present.
~Posted by Rev Kathryn Bindig, MDiv. MS; Pastoral Care Minister with assistance from Rich Muscatello; Director of Business Development & Strategy
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