Saturday, August 21, 2010

Saturday Seven (in no particular order)

1 ~ I'm in the process of applying for substitute teaching jobs.  Amass stellar academic record in seminary, a summer of CPE at Giant Famous Hospital, numerous practical ministry experiences, fail an exam ~ go back 20 years.  For sure, do not pass go.

2 ~ "Desire leads to more desire. Prayer articulates our longing for a fullness of being, our reaching out of the mind for what is beyond it, and helps us find and love God and grow with our love. It is like the sun warming a seed into life, like the work of clearing away weeds and bringing water to the interior garden of St. Teresa’s inspired imagery. Prayer enlarges our desire until it receives God’s desire for us. In prayer we grow big enough to house God’s desire for us, which is the Holy Spirit." (From Primary Speech by Ann and Barry Ulanov, quoted  here.)

3 ~ I am sure that there is a connection between 1 and 2.

4 ~ A week from right now I will be en route to Pittsburgh to spend four days re-taking the dreaded exegesis exam.  I am going to work fast and leave early, since the last two possible days for writing overlap with my sons' 26th birthday and the second anniversary of Josh's death.  I am going to try to be focused and generous for the first four days and pretty silent for the next two.  Please pray for me to retain some semblance of sanity.  That request is not sarcastic or wry or humorous. 

5 ~ Two of my nieces, sisters, produced their first babies over the past two Fridays, one a boy and one a girl.  My sister-in-law, herself a twin, was present with her daughters for the births of these first two grandchildren.  Much joy all around.  My mother-in-law, upon leaving the hospital yesterday, was asked by one of the nurses what she has planned for next Friday.

6 ~ A Wisdom Story, found here

The Master always frowned on anything that seemed sensational. “The divine”, he claimed, “is only found in the ordinary.”

To a disciple who was attempting forms of asceticism that bordered on the bizarre the Master was heard to say, “Holiness is a mysterious thing: The greater it is, the less it is noticed.”

7 ~ And finally, although I am no theologian, the study of theology was my favorite part of seminary.   Could this be why?

"Theologians are people for whom the Christian faith is especially difficult, incomprehensible, infuriating. As a rule they are not especially talented or spiritually adept individuals. They are people whose minds have been hurt by God, and they are restlessly searching for – what? Healing perhaps, or catharsis? To expect so much from the study of theology would be futile or even dangerous. In any case there is no lack of opportunities for theological catharsis: often our worship services seem calculated to remove the difficulty of believing, to make God easy and accessible, more a cure than a wasting sickness.

Perhaps then we should define theologians like this: They are people for whom even the Christian worship service does not provide adequate catharsis of the hurtfulness of God."

Read the whole post here

And have a lovely week-end.


  1. Oh Robin, my small prayers you shall have.

  2. You always are in my thoughts and prayers - I will double the effort next weekend when you take the exam. Ridiculous that something as trivial as a test stands between you sharing your wonderful gifts with a faith community.

  3. So much going on--seems it's all very big stuff. My thoughts and prayers and hopes surround you, especially so in the next two weeks.
    Hugs and love and rest,

  4. Somehow, there's something either terribly ironic or profoundly hopeful about your struggle in light of this weekend's Gospel about the healing on the sabbath. Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose. (o) Robin...

  5. Yes, wow, that is too much to take in at a short time. Sometimes pressure yields opportunity though--for more to come through than normally is available. May you have that experience and closure on the test.

    The other, that is tender forever. Blessings.

  6. I will light a candle and keep it lit as you write that exam and move through those days - may you be focused even, or especially, through the pain.

  7. sounds like I should be a theologian too. will think of you this week.

  8. I will definitely pray, Robin.


  9. Praying here, too. (word verification is Blessha)