Taking it all in and pouring it out

There is so much available to us in the world we live in  . . . I have both weekly and daily practices where I find myself taking in some of the riches of life. I am drawn to the things that are life-giving and nourishing to my spirit. One of those weekly practices is listening to each week’s Episode of On Being with Krista Tippett. It airs Sundays on NPR. From the website it states: “On Being opens up the animating questions at the center of human life: What does it mean to be human, and how do we want to live? We explore these questions in their richness and complexity in 21st-century lives and endeavors. We pursue wisdom and moral imagination as much as knowledge; we esteem nuance and poetry as much as fact.”

Few of the guests are Christians and some unthinkingly say, “you can’t get anything from those who are not coming from a Christ-centered place” and I wholeheartedly disagree. Mainly because I believe all truth is God’s truth and true wisdom comes from above, whether a person acknowledges truth and wisdom coming from God or not. We have so much to learn from our fellow image bearers. Let us not count them out and may we be granted the humility to learn from those who we may disagree with theologically.

In the middle of July Marabai Bush was the featured guest of On Being. Recently, she has worked with Google and developed their “Search inside Yourself” employee program.  “Mindfulness space stress reduction” was the subtitle of the course. There is much more to who Marabai is. She co-founded the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society and is the co-author ofCompassion in Action: Setting Out on the Path of Service.  At the outset of the interview Marabai talks about the “L” word, Love.

“It is really when someone’s heart opens that things really change. I am more and more willing to take the risk to  offer those practices in secular circumstances. People really want to be loved it turns out…I have found it to be really powerful if you find the right way.”

There is a gentleness in this particular conversation. As Marabai converses with Krista about emotional intelligence, mindfulness, and contemplative practices, I am reminded how important it is to pause, stop, and breathe and practice meditation.  Marabai’s compassion for others and whose lifework has been in helping others is inspiring to me.

The discovery of being gentle with myself has been a long time coming. It is one of the keys of overcoming perfectionism which is an enemy of loving-kindness and sweet forgiveness. I’ve wrestled with some difficult internal struggles this past week and I am so grateful for life-giving and understanding friends willing to walk through it with me.  And a discerning spirit to feed upon messages that promote compassion. It all starts with me.

What do you nourish your spirit and soul with these days?




Published by: Catherine Mullaney

First and foremost, I am a child of the Living God who is found as One God in Three persons, The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit. I have been married to the same man for over 25 years, together we have three adult children. I love my family and God’s and I know that both are trying to love me. Over my lifetime, I hope that I have also been a good friend, faithful citizen of the Kingdom, thoughtful, kind, open, and that I will continue to do so by God’s grace. If you were to look at my weekly calendar, you might describe my life as diverse so no one can stick me in the Christian box or the recovery box or any box for that matter. People don’t belong in boxes anyway. I am grateful to be human. I enjoy living in New England. I love a great game of golf, catching a sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean, a good book, to write with pen and paper, fruitful conversations, to sing and dance, to walk. One of my signatures in this life is my laugh and I love to “sign.”

Categories The Power of LoveTags, , , , , , , 3 Comments

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