Winter Solstice Blessing

Winter Solstice Blessing

From Karen Clark’s blog and book A Path of She

Nature remembers what we humans have forgotten – that every cycle must return to stillness, and to the dark.

Every out-breath requires an in-breath

Every outer endeavor turns back inward to its origins, its center, in order to begin again.

From death comes new life, and from darkest night, the new dawn is born.

May the darkness of winter bring new appreciation of the Light.

After the storm

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In case you hadn’t heard, it snowed. It snowed A LOT. For about 36 hours, we watched the piles grow taller and taller. It was beautiful.

After about 16 hours of shoveling, first the driveway and then the leavings from the snow plow, we were back to a regular schedule. But life, for just a day or two, was artfully interrupted.

 

 

Cold-hearted

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The Mid-Atlantic is not known for supremely cold winters. Oh, we get a “cold snap” here and there in the winter months, but anything that lasts more than a week or two, and the natives get a little restless.

After all, we’re not Buffalo. Or Minnesnowta. We have plows and salt trucks, and it’s not unusual to have to wait a day to get plowed out in our neighborhood.

The last few weeks the temperatures have stayed below 40 degrees. The federal government closed at least once, and schools have been closed or delayed. Even our daughter’s college closed because the roads were not safe.

I know. You’re laughing at us. We accept your disdain. At least we’re honest.

Now it’s been cold long enough that the cumulative effects of the cold are starting to show up. Little by little, I see changes that aren’t “normal” for around here. For instance, I don’t quite remember the color of my car without dried salt spray on it. The back gate is frozen shut. I feel the tension in my shoulders from hunching down into my coat as I go from my car to the facilities and homes where my patients live. And there are very few things which will drag me from home once I’m holding a cat and warming up.

When I drove by this pond near our house and saw the geese scattered across the ice, I wondered at the change. A month ago, even a few weeks ago, the water was open and clear. Normally they would be paddling about, feeding and waddling and honking. Today, they were more like peppercorns spilled over an icy table. Cold. Quiet. Still.

The change was gradual. The result is clear.

In the season of Lent, there is a call to renew the spiritual connection, to find that spark that has diminished and rekindle it. The human heart — my heart — can grow cold and unfeeling.

The words of Keith Green’s song came to mind…

My eyes are dry
My faith is old
My heart is hard
My prayers are cold
And I know how I ought to be
Alive to you and dead to me…

During Lent, I’m about this business of renewal. Remembering the mercy shown me. Living into God’s compassion. Reclaiming the love and fire I have for my work.

Spring will come. My heart will thaw.
I’ll join the song…
Blessed be the Name of the Lord.

Friday Five: Whining in a Winter Wonderland

I’m hosting the RevGals Friday Five! Play along if you’d like!

It’s official. If you’re in the Northern Hemisphere, you are experiencing winter. SO… tell us:

1. Winter: What do you think about it in general? Do you love it? Hate it? Or say, “meh – it’s just another season!”

I don’t mind it too much. You can always put on more clothes. You can only take off so much and be “legal”.

2. Footwear: Show us or tell us about your favorite winter shoes/boots.

I love my Merrell’s clogs. They are lined with a plush lining. They can handle anything until the snow gets over about 2 inches. Sexy? Nope. Comfy and warm? Yep!

3. Discuss: Pedicures in winter – necessity or silly?

They are part of my self-care and relaxation time. Current polish color: I am Not a Waitress.

4. Toasty toes: Whether you knit your own or buy them, tell us what socks keep your feet toasty warm!

I love my polypropylene socks that wick away the moisture and keep my toes warm. My favorite pair are a charming camo print.

5. Driving me crazy: What do you wish the drivers around you would do to make travel during the winter months a little less nutty?

Calm down. Slow down. And clean off your car. Especially the “hat” of snow on top!

BONUS: What’s the weather like out there? Share a picture so we can shiver or be jealous!

snowdayTaken Wednesday of this week as I was driving between appointments!