A cairn is a human-made pile (or stack) of stones. Cairns have been and are used for a broad variety of purposes, from prehistoric times to the present. Cairns are and have been used as landmarks, monuments, for ceremonial purposes, to mark the location of cached items, or to mark trails or pathways.
Cairns vary in size and complexity and may be painted or decorated for increased visibility or for religious reasons. The photo pictured here is a cairn I constructed from stones gathered from our corn field. I placed it on the small deck outside of my office and prayer space as a reminder for reflection and prayer.
My cairn calls me to ask who are my “cairns”? Who shows me my path toward the Divine and toward becoming more authentic and real? What are the cairns or signs I have missed on my path? What cairns did I notice and traveled in a different direction because I saw them?
Take a few minutes in quiet and ponder these questions. Journal your answers. Express gratitude to those who have been cairns for you. If you would like to talk further about your spiritual journey – please call.
Years ago the easy listening duo, The Carpenters, had a hit song “Rainy Days and Mondays” in which lead singer, Karen Carpenter, lamented there was nothing to do but frown because rainy days and Mondays “always get me down”.
Sometimes we get the blues, go into a funk, get down in the dumps, feel blah and so on. I’ve learned that it is okay to lean into that feeling. I become still and curl up on the couch with a good book and a cup of tea – especially on rainy days.
I’m a farmer’s wife. Rainy days on the farm are days for little projects that got pushed to the bottom of the list to be completed. Or rainy days provide the excuse for my husband to “shut down” for the day. Relax. Take a nap.
Rainy days remind us to slow down, take a breath and listen to the drizzling rain on the leaves of the trees. As the trees are nourished and refreshed by the rain, may we be reminded it is Creation and all within it which nourishes and refreshes us.
Sometimes the best thing to do when it’s raining is to let it rain.
How do you spend rainy days? What gets you “down”? How do you pray with those feelings? What does it mean for you to “let it rain when it is raining”?
We have wounded hearts. Hearts which are cold, frightened, frantic, busy, shame-ridden, broken, and heavy. Through care, contemplation, and sharing and Grace and Love, we can heal our wounded hearts.
If we allow our losses and failures to define us forever, we give into spiritual inertia and our journey as spiritual beings slows or stops altogether. But if we look at woundedness, claim it and hand them over to a Higher Power, that Higher Power can use all of it as building blocks on the way to recovery.
You are not alone. There is always a guide, a teacher, a coach, a director – SOMEONE – who can help you back on the path. Freed from our inertia, we can once again move and dance and sing with all creation and Creator. No matter what is happening – You are Beloved.
I am always renewed and refreshed when I am able to visit the convent and grounds of Sisters of St. Francis Oldenburg as I did yesterday. It was beautiful, breezy summer day at the ‘Burg and I found myself walking the grounds with my new DLSR camera snapping photos and reflecting. Unhurriedly, I studied the surroundings for good pics and felt myself re-anchoring, refocusing and re-centering. All was seemingly right with my world.
The ‘Burg is a sacred space for me. A space to encounter the Creator and Creation. A space for reflection, for rest, for pause. A space to breathe in Grace and Love. I drove home with good pics and a renewed spirit.
What are sacred spaces for you? In what places do you encounter the Creator, the Divine, the Holy? How are ordinary places sacred for you?
I hope this day you are able to experience sacredness in the spaces around you.