Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Day 492: Greater than through love and support: Journey with the Cape Fear Heart Walk and Adam Freeman

Connections: it just keeps happening. But then again "connecting" is my whole story for the last 22 years of my life. I read a quote this weekend (and I will explain more later) that is actually in the title of my blog "living in the heart of God". The quote is from Kahlil Gilbran's work, "the Prophet". The Prophet said: "When you love you should not say, "God is in my heart," but rather, "I am in the heart of God.""

I remember the first time that I read that, I meditated on it but for some reason, of which I would grow to understand I grew, I "connected" with that statement. Somehow it defined what I was feeling and the state I was in. I felt a certain warmth from it. I knew, somehow, that my higher power, whom I chose to call God, was not confined within me, but rather, I was, by choosing to live a certain way, to act in a manner that was more harmonious, more in tune with His will, living in the "heart of God". By doing so, the world in which I woke to each morning was in fact, the world of a living God, a higher power, a it/him/her what you will, but for me, there was and is no denying it.

A world that was connected, spiritually by something much greater than myself. Maybe that is "too too"..but I remember my first time feeling that sense of peace, the first understanding of that connectedness...and while I have had willful actions, and while I totally ignore at times for whatever reason the opporunity for peace, I have not lost that sense of belonging or "connectedness" sense then. I have never not felt that. It is a constant in whatever stage of growth, whatever trouble, whatever joy that my life has.

But no matter what happens, no matter how that feels,  I have not lost the sense of awe, that sense of..I was going to write gratitude, but that is  more of an action...not a reaction...I have not lost that sense of humility when the connections to people, places and things occur and somehow I am involved.

That brings me to this weekend. Some time ago a student who graduated about three year ago, one I adore and I have always loved, called me and ask to come see me. An adult now, she is working professionally, was seeing someone, and had become an incredible young, professional woman. But in she walked to my office and the expression on her face resembled the first time I ever met her years before at freshmen orientation..wide-eyed by reticent. She clearly had something to ask me, but was holidng back.

She first told me she had gotten engaged and I was thrilled! Her husband to be also worked with us and was a great guy. She was happy. And then she asked me what she came for: to be the officiant at her and his wedding. I was blown away. I say I am honored alot..and well, I am. It was amazing. I am fortunate that students have told me on a few occassions how they feel about me and their experience over the years, but this was truly stunning....What a precious gift to be invited to bless, officiate, be involved in the union of two be thought of...well, it was stunning.

This too was something I have wanted for a very long time, personally, and had been wanting to pursue ordination. Well, this accelerated the process and while I am ordained outside of our church, I am on a path and doing something I love in addition to so many other wonderful things! A very precious gift was that my own priest outfitted me for the ceremony with vestments that were appropriate. Having her do this was a blessing that is hard to explain...and one I very grateful for.

So, this weekend was the time for wedding. I was nervous, but not afraid. I was excited, but not intimidated. It just felt right. That is what I am talking about regarding being in God's heart. When it is right. When it is supposed to be. It all happens. Everything, of course, happens for a reason, but this, this is so powerful when there is this feeling of peace during excitement..when it so special and there is this presence and love....

I sat in our garden and wrote out the order or worship and some of my own reflections for the service. As the fountain trickled and I hear my next door neighbors working in their garden, I was able to write about family and love. When I gave the ceremony as written to the bride and groom, they were thrilled. But i left one thing out. I wanted to give them something at the ceremony and so, after their vows and before I pronounced them maried, I read the short piece in the prophet on love. I was able to tell them that when Michael and came off Mt. Pisquah almost 15 years ago, my mother gave us this book, a book I had grown up with all my life but only until I was much older did I really understand and embrace. I wanted my wish for their happy life together to be what my own Mother had wanted for me and Michael..and so I read that piece....

See, it was another connection....all my life that book was in our house. Now it was not only the most special work in our own home, a blessing on our marriage, but i was able to pass this on. Throughout the weekend there were these amazing connections to people in wedding party that was nothing but love..her amazing parents, friends that knew friends of mine, other former students who are thriving and I am so proud of..and then, after the wedding, we are all sitting around as the dancing began and in conversation one of the guests said to another, "you know he has lost over 100 lbs." To which she said that her son, sitting across the table, had just opened a gym. So they asked me how it happened and I stated talking about connections: Windell's passing, the heart association, then meeting Adam, Kayliegh..and when I got to Kayliegh..well, the woman who's son has a gym is in health care in Raleigh, and before I could finish Kayleigh's name, she was telling me her story. She knew it and knew of her inspiring journey! Tears filled my and just being amazed. She looked at me..and this woman was amazing..and said "everything happens for a reason"..and she smiled. Now, tell me there is not power in that..there is not a connection...this is not something greater than myself...ourselves.

So, here is the prayer that has blessed my home from my mother, which now is blessing them...and maybe it will connect with you.....All I know is that I am sure that if this blog is being read, we are in God's heart together...

From the Prophet: On Love: 

When you love you should not say, "God is in my heart," but rather, "I am in the heart of God."
And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course.

Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself.
But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:
To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
To know the pain of too much tenderness.
To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
To rest at the noon hour and meditate love's ecstasy;
To return home at eventide with gratitude;
And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.

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