Yesterday Kate was leading a brief meditation prior to a group of us visiting with residents at Episcopal Homes, a residence for seniors. She began with a centering exercise quite common and helpful for entering prayer. Kate invited us to settle comfortably into our chairs, quiet from the myriad of sounds, breathe in/breathe out, attend to the beating of our hearts.
In the past such “centering” has been a prelude to prayer, dispositional, setting the stage. Yesterday was perceptibly different.
The generic straight-back chair morphed into the myriad of people — the web of generations past as well as present companions — who hold and support our life and efforts.
Letting go of the cacophony of muted sounds in our urban environment, a feeling of reassurance arose. We could disengage for this time because the “buzz” was testimony to a web of activity providing for our well-being.
Breathing opened to something beyond a reflexive physical rhythm. The movement of air — in and out — carried the assurance of bounty that continuously flows to us, unmerited, gratuitous.
The beat of my heart spoke quietly of God’s own life which imperceptibly carries us — each of us, all of us, every bit of creation, holding all in being as a loving parent remains bonded with a child.
Yesterday was gift. It need not be analyzed, explained or idealized. It is meant to be simply received, our exhale whispering gratitude.