Attentive

“…you would do well to be attentive…”

Like to a lamp burning in a dark place,
You would do well to be attentive
to God’s word
to God’s presence
to GOD.
You would do well to be attentive
not “scattered” or “distracted”
not “busy” or “effective”;
Attentive.
Like to a lamp burning in a dark place.
God’s word burns.
God’s presence burns.
GOD burns.
For you.
A burning carbide light illuminates the living cave,
stalagmites and stalagtites reaching toward one another,
stony columns bearing witness to their occasional union.

But if the light is left untended,
ignored,
the explorer is stranded in total dark.

No hint
no neutrino
of light;
just empty void…
deep, impenetrable dark…
but the slow
drip
drip
drip
as the underground waters
slowly, patiently seep from the ancient rock
inviting, bringing, binding rocks together;
part of God’s ever changing Creation.
A burning divine spark illuminates my living days,
birth and death reaching toward one another,
and I would do well to be attentive to that light.

For if I leave the light untended,
ignored,
I may be bereft in total dark.

No hint
no feeling
of God;
just empty void…
deep, impenetrable absence…
but the slow
drip
drip
drip
as the baptismal waters,
slowly, patiently slip from my infant forehead
inviting, bringing, binding spirits together;
part of God’s ever present Now.

 

— – –

As we wind down this week of the Arizona Five Day Academy for Spiritual Formation, “attentive” seems to be a good single-word summary of the experience. As we have discussed and focused on practices of contemplative prayer, we have talked about being aware and attentive – to our bodies, our hearts, our selves, and the God who abides within and among and around us.

During worship on Tuesday evening, Wendy (one of our team leaders) shared a word focused around 2 Peter 1:16-19, Peter’s reflection on the transfiguration, which includes a reflection on the prophetic word(s) given in Scripture:

2 Peter 1:19 (CEB)
19 In addition, we have a most reliable prophetic word, and you would do well to pay attention to it, just as you would to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.

Wendy shared her experience as a young spelunker in the mid-70s, utilizing carbide lamps to explore dark caves. On one such expedition, in a cave among stalagmites and stalagmites slowly joining into stone columns through the centuries, she convinced the team to all turn out their lamps. She described the ensuing dark, how it was total dark with no hint or neutrino of light, with just the sound of water dripping.

Her sermon was the original seed for the above reflection.

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One response to “Attentive

  1. Pingback: Doubt's Gravity | Gloryscope Daily

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