Sacred is the Call

I went away to the woods and water
expecting to meet God.

Instead I met Myself.
And we swam together for hours in a
blue pool of desire
for silence and beauty and
stillness so strong that it threatened to drown me
with its urgency and longing.

The skin of my fingers and toes
curled into rivulets,
water flooding my ears,
I emerged as if from birth again.
Naked, alone, and new.
Certain of only one thing,
that God had whispered my name
and my soul reverberated like a gong.

It is still humming within me you see.
With a sacred call to
witness to the wild mystery
beating
at the heart of the world.

-Christine Valters Paintner

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4 Responses

  1. Cheryl and Maggie, Thank you so much for your very gracious comments.

    Cheryl, Prayers for the layers of loss being unfolded, I believe we all carry them, we just don’t always have the means to tend them well (I am working on a post about the art of grieving). There is no holding it back, it will break forth, often unexpectedly. One thing a favorite spiritual director of mine once told me when I was going through a painful loss of a friendship, was that being really present to the landscape of that loss would be a gift when I sat with others, that I was familiar with loss, disappointment, hurt and not afraid to face it lovingly. Being present to your own loss will be gift to those you sit with dealing with losses of their own.  And thank you for the compassion you offer to me, I receive it as gift as well.

    Blessings to you both, Christine

  2. Christine,
    I sit at my computer in tears today over layers of loss (as you phrased it a few messages ago). Thank you for your poem that helps release my tears and grief. As sojourners in the world, there is comfort in knowing that others are traveling somewhat similar roads – and we can encourage each other along the way. I certainly today have greater compassion for your journey as I stumble to find my own way.
    With gratefulness that “God has whispered our names,”
    Cheryl

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