In the Rockies

In the Rockies
Butler Gulch

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Amelia and Ft. St. George Islands -- and my talk

There are so many things I would like to write about this morning that it's hard to choose. However, I'm ruminating on my Quiet Day presentation at St. George's Episcopal Church on Ft. St. George's Island, Florida and how I might move forward to schedule similar programs so that is today's topic.

When I talk aloud about something I'm working on, I usually have insights that don't come other ways.  I don't know that this will suffice, but I'll try it and see.

I probably need a publicist, but hope the Holy Spirit will lead for now.  One thing I learned was that I'm not comfortable with my picture and publicity posted around for all to see.  My friend, the Reverend Nancee Martin, and her staff had done an outstanding job with bulletin inserts and posters.  I found myself squirming as I looked at them.  Nancee took many photos of me--can't remember when anyone has ever done that--as she wanted me to have choices for future publicity.  Some are nice--and they all have lovely backgrounds as they were taken in beautiful spots.

My sea walks were wonderful and refreshing.  Sunshine reigned and although the temperatures were chilly until Sunday when it warmed, I relished my time on the beach.  On Friday I spend most of the day walking between and around the birds--my primary companions, perched on a dune on the edge of a state park where I was alone on the beach for a couple of hours, and tossed my shoes and waded in very chilly water one afternoon.  The sea restores me in ways the mountains cannot.  I returned grateful but not happy to be back.  (My 80-year-old friend and I snowshoed to a favorite lake last Friday, accompanied by memories of our friend who now walks California beaches.  She wants to do a couple more snowshoes so we will--if there is enough snow.)

The Quiet Day presentation was easy--the way things are when I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing.  The folks there were welcoming and open.  They participated in the sharing, some deeply.  I used the nature photos for sharing my story, knowing that since those people live in such a glorious place (more about that in a bit), nature must be important in their lives.  The lone man asked a question about forgiveness that allowed more conversation about that important topic, and the woman who gave me a ride to church (so I didn't have to go for the early service) said that had impacted her more than anything.   

I spoke about healing--through nature, through my meditation practice, and through opening more and more to Divine love.  Through the Darkness into the Light was the topic--perhaps more appropriate during Lent than other times, but it speaks of my journey.  The participants shared their childhood escape or safe places generously when I finished that portion of my presentation.  I had asked that question when I gave a short program for my Daughters of the King prayer group and had one lone responder. 

The most effective tool for the primary exercise I used came to me as I walked the beach--broken, but lovely shells.  Other options were writing or drawing and choosing a scripture verse from those I had available, but most chose a shell for reflection.  The topic--what keeps you from opening fully to God's love or from being the person you were meant to be.  I was clear that this could be related to any part of their lives.  Their shares were inspiring. 

The islands--Amelia and Ft. St. George--have old growth forests with moss swinging from high branches and lush vegetation as well as wonderful waterways and beaches.  That was a delightful surprise.  One of Nancee's parishioneers took us on a walk through the Ft. St. George forest.  There are other sights worth mentioning on that island, but that's for another day. 

Blessings to all who read.

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