Meditation on Psalm 81

You heard me when I called, . . . and
You caught me as I fell
I rested in your arms as
You carried me from darkness into light

You dried my tears, and
You lifted my fears from my shoulders
I leaned upon your breast, . . . and
I heard you call me beloved

Even when I ignore you
You do not abandon me
Even when I walk away
You wait for me to return

I do not deserve your love, . . . yet
I choose to accept or refuse,
then . . .
I hear you call me beloved

Ruth Jewell, ©July 28, 2017

Hand Drawing a Labyrinth Meditation – Prayerful Tuesday

Drawing a Cretan or Classical Labyrinth

Note: the artist is making a right hand labyrinth, instruction are for a left hand labyrinth. 
The method is the same; the difference is the starting point,
which is from the top left hand short angle line to the top long center line.

I love walking a labyrinth, whether in an indoor or outdoor setting. It is one of the best ways to find the stillness within I need to hear the voice of the Divine.  But sometimes I am nowhere near a labyrinth, so in that case I will use a finger labyrinth. But I don’t always carry one with you, so, what I do is draw my own labyrinth. Drawing a labyrinth can also be a meditative act, which can be done anywhere or anytime I have a few moments to spare.

I have provided the following instruction for drawing the Classical (or Cretan) Labyrinth, which is the simplest to draw.   As you sit down with your paper, take a deep breath to center yourself.  Offer a prayer of intention and begin to draw.  As you make your seed pattern and connect each of the lines and dots give yourself to the process, letting the growing Labyrinth enter into your prayers and meditation.  When you are finished use your finger or pencil too “walk” your labyrinth just as you would with any finger labyrinth.  When you have “exited” offer a prayer of thanksgiving and gratitude for these moments of stillness.

Instructions for Drawing Classical (Cretan) Labyrinth

The best way to draw a labyrinth is to begin with a pencil and paper (you might want to include eraser?) We do not know who found it out or invented it, but this method is ingeniously simple and with practice easy to repeat.

It is very important to place your pattern such that you have sufficient space paper for the following steps. Draw the pattern into the lower half of your sheet of paper just slightly left of the center line, making sure you leave enough space on the right and left side and above.

First you draw the basic seed pattern that consists of 4 dots in a square. Inside draw an equal-leg cross. And into each of the 4 small squares resulting I draw a small angle.

Fig. 1
Fig. 1

 

Fig. 2. Seed Pattern
Fig. 2. Seed Pattern

 

 

Next you will begin to connect the dots and lines, in sequence, from the left to the right, clockwise all in arc-shaped lines as shown in Fig 3 and Fig. 4

Fig. 3
Fig. 3 The First Arc

 

Fig. 4
Fig. 4 Three of the Equally Spaced Arcs

Begin with the middle line (see Fig. 3 above) this is the center.

Now connect the next free end of the line on the left side to the free dot on the right side with an arc equal distant from the first arch (Fig. 4).  Continue drawing arcs from left to right.  After all of the left side lines and dots have been connected there should be a gap between the bottom left short angle line and the bottom long center line, that is the entrance. Your Labyrinth should look like Fig. 5, if it doesn’t simply start over. Using your finger or a pencil  to “walk” your completed Labyrinth.

Fig. 5 The Finished Labyrinth
Fig. 5 The Finished Labyrinth

 

May your find the stillness within as you walk the labyrinth in it’s many and diverse ways.
Ruth Jewell, ©September 30, 2014

All Will Be Well – Prayerful Tuesday

 

Earth taken by Juno satellite, Nasa
Earth taken by Juno satellite, Nasa

For the last couple of days I have been using a prayer book of a collection of Julian of Norwich’s writings as my meditation focus and I would like to share this morning’s prayer with you.

Now our Lord reminded me
of the desire for him I had earlier.
I saw that nothing stood in my way but sin,
and I realized that this is the same for all of us.
And I thought that if there were no sin,
we would all be pure and akin to our Lord
Just as we had been created sinless.
But in my vision, Jesus informed me
of everything necessary for me to know.
And he told me: Sin is necessary,
but everything will turn out for the good,
and all will be well,
and everything will be well.
by the simple word, ”sin”
God reminded me of all that is not good
and of the suffering and grief of all creation,
and above all of the utter shame and sacrifice
he endured for our salvation.
We have all suffered woe and sorrow
as we follow our master Jesus,
and we shall do so until we are utterly purified,
I did not see sin itself,
for it has no real substance,
it is not real:
it can be known only by the suffering it causes,
and even that pain lasts but a while.
And during the woe
we might take consolation in our Lord’s suffering.
And out of his tender love, he consoles us, saying:
True, sin caused this pain, but all will be well.
In his voice I never hear a hint of blame,
and since we who are guilty are not blamed,
why should we in turn blame God?

Julian of Norwich

All will be well, that is a powerful statement of faith, of trust in G-d to always be there.  Sometimes it is hard for me to hold onto those words.  Sometimes they don’t seem true especially in these days when violence and disasters dominate our world.  But Julian of Norwich says “but everything will turn out for the good, and all will be well, and everything will be well” and somehow in this morning’s meditation I find the space to believe that and to trust G-d knows what she is doing.

For this week’s spiritual practice to consider the sins of the world war, pollution, global warming and to hold the victims in your heart and offer prayers for their well being.  As you sit with your prayers listen for a call to work in some way to right an injustice you see this week.

“All will be well”

Ruth Jewell, ©September 2, 2014

Desert

Color_card_dove_pix

 

As I sit a robin sings his morning song,
tea in hand, dog in my lap
I wait expectantly,
I listen . . .
all I hear are crows, and wrens.

Where are you?
It has been so long since
I felt your presence.
I long to feel your touch on my cheek,
to hear your whispers in my ear.
I want to be enfolded in your Holy embrace

I search my heart for you.
I seek you in the eyes of those I meet.
I cannot find you, and
without you I am lost.

There is so much to tell you, but . . .
you are not there to hear.
Patience I tell myself, you will come.
So like a Desert Mother I sit day after day and wait,
listening, longing,
silent I sit.

Ruth Jewell, ©June 25, 2014