With March we offer a new invitation for contemplation. Our focus for this month is Kinship with Creation. We are continuing our monthly exploration of each theme of the Monk Manifesto. Our focus for this month is Kinship with Creation — How might you nourish an Earth-cherishing consciousness? The fourth principle reads:
I commit to cultivating awareness of my kinship with creation and a healthy asceticism by discerning my use of energy and things, letting go of what does not help nature to flourish.
We invite you into a lectio divina practice with some words from Psalm 104 (see below).
How Community Lectio Divina works:
Each month there will be a passage selected from scripture, poetry, or other sacred texts (and occasionally visio and audio divina as well with art and music).
How amazing it would be to discern together the movements of the Spirit at work in the hearts of monks around the world.
I invite you to set aside some time this week to pray with the text below. Here is a handout with a brief overview (feel free to reproduce this handout and share with others as long as you leave in the attribution at the bottom – thank you!)
Lean into silence, pray the text, listen to what shimmers, allow the images and memories to unfold, tend to the invitation, and then sit in stillness.
You cause the grass to grow for the cattle,
and plants for people to use,
to bring forth food from the earth,
and wine to gladden the human heart,
oil to make the face shine
and bread to strengthen the human heart.
The trees of God are watered abundantly,
the cedars of Lebanon that God planted.
In them the birds build their nests;
the stork has its home in the fir trees.
The high mountains are for the wild goats;
the rocks are a refuge for the conveys.
You have made the moon to mark the seasons;
the sun knows its time for setting.
— Psalm 104:14-19
After you have prayed with the text (and feel free to pray with it more than once – St. Ignatius wrote about the deep value of repetition in prayer, especially when something feels particularly rich) spend some time journaling what insights arise for you.
How is this text calling to your dancing monk heart in this moment of your life?
What does this text have to offer to your discernment journey of listening moment by moment to the invitation from the Holy?
What wisdom emerged that may be just for you, but may also be for the wider community?
Sharing Your Responses
Please share the fruits of your lectio divina practice in the comments below (at the bottom of the page) or at our Holy Disorder of Dancing Monks Facebook group which you can join here. There are over 2900 members and it is a wonderful place to find connection and community with others on this path.
You might share the word or phrase that shimmered, the invitation that arose from your prayer, or artwork you created in response. There is something powerful about naming your experience in community and then seeing what threads are woven between all of our responses.
Join the Holy Disorder of Dancing Monks Facebook group here>>
*Note: If this is your first time posting, or includes a link, your comment will need to be moderated before it appears. This is to prevent spam and should be approved within 24 hours.
My husband, Jim, has been building a small camp retreat where he is reforesting a portion of the Arenal Preserve in northern Nicaragua. When I visit each Friday I am always enchanted by the variations of light on the mountains, trees, coffee plants, flowers, the abundance and beauty and holiness of this sanctuary.
My camera does not always capture the depth and breadth of this atmosphere, but Psalm 104 does express God’s glory and Presence in Creation.
It is hard to select just one photograph to illustrate, but last week’s sunset was indeed spectacular, with the trees drawn dark against the bright colors.
If you want to see more, look on my facebook page, Sarah Hornsby, or on our Jim Sarah Hornsby Reforest Camp Blog on Word Press. Blessings, Sarah
“wine to gladden the human heart
bread to strengthen the human heart”
especially when the heart is sick
the Presence comes with healing balm
kinship so amazing to astound in wonder
the precious gift of transfiguring Love
One Body, One Earth, One Cosmic Christ