Years ago, I had a conversation about God with a firefighter while we stood on a small-town Wyoming street corner, waiting for his partner to return with some equipment. “I can’t find God inside a building,” he said, “but in the woods…yep…in the woods…” I have thought of him many times since this — What he said so simply and honestly is, I think, a beautiful truth of God’s love that flows through the whole of God’s creation. Through the whole of it. Through the earth, the waters, the air, the flora, the fauna, the humanity… To be held, welcomed, within creation is to be held and welcomed by God.
For the last little while, I have taken my breakfast by the sea. I go around 6:30 a.m. with a thermos of coffee and simple meal – sometimes an oatcake wrapped in a cloth napkin; other times, a jar of ‘cold oats’ – one of my summertime favourites. I read, I write, I pray… I don’t need to stay long – most days I’m back within an hour. Recently, I found myself writing about the feeling of being in a space that welcomes, that assumes you into its being… that breathes all around you and with which my own breathing, my own heart, become as one.
It changes my day when I walk with that communion in my blood, my being.
Bone and Feeling
To receive horizon’s welcome,
to note the mood of the sea;
to be still within
a space that receives me as part of it
by drawing me down to my elements;
to the bone and feeling of my being;
to know with the truth of all senses
that tides, the crows, herons, geese, gulls,
loons, cormorants, and every sort of tree
and all that has become stone,
breathe an embrace around me.
To let go into this
is my heart’s easing, here
in the holy weight of briny quiet.
Reflection and photo by Kimberly M. King, RSCJ