Pondering: Paying attention

Ponder 1Try as I might to concentrate sometimes at Church I’m a bit distracted. My mind wanders. I start thinking deeply about relationships, upcoming events, etc. that I kind of lose what’s going on right in front of me. I’m not listening, paying attention or absorbing. I realize I’m not paying attention then tune back in. I’d love to be completely focused in on the Mass, but sometimes it just doesn’t happen. There’s something of a cycle of focusing in and tuning out. Sometimes it’s something in the readings, the homily or like tonight a song that sent my thoughts spinning out in  different directions.

Tonight (I started writing this shortly after getting home from Church) it was Hosea and the realization of the parallel in the Gospels in the parable of the Prodigal Son. And as I write this it goes back to the story of the fall – a way back in Genesis. Well the realization that the stories are similar. There is a a relationship that begins in some way (marriage, family, friendship) that is somehow then torn apart for some reason and then reconciled. Sometimes relationships are complicated – a marriage with children, a long time friendship, a marriage without kids. Sometimes it’s as simple as a misunderstanding a misreading of a comment spoken or written; sometimes it’s simply the distance. Sometimes it’s just….

Come back to me with all your heart
Don’t let fear keep us apart
Trees do bend though straight and tall
So must we to others call

Long have I waited for
Your coming home to me
And living deeply our new life

The wilderness will lead you
To the place where I will speak
Integrity and justice
With tenderness
You shall know.

I’m in awe over and over and over again how much God wants to be in relationship with us. How God shows his Mercy and his Grace, keeping his hand extended to us, offering that way back, knowing how much we’re struggling and in pain or lost and lonely. And how with the gift of free-will he’s given us keeps us from staying in relationship with him. It keeps us from trusting in his Grace and Mercy. And now it makes sense, I’ve had this song lyric running through my head for weeks – “Captivated by your Mercy, I’m overwhelmed, I’m overwhelmed by You”.

I do have a word of the year for next year, I’m also going to add, particularly for here Grace and Mercy. Sometime in the next few weeks I’ll haul out the embroidery unit and stitch out the words then quilt the reminder piece to hang on my wall in front of my sewing machine. Yes, yes I can quilt it, however there is an idea forming in my head that will work I think.

I can relate all of this to quilting, relationships in quilting and particularly how we treat ourselves as quilt makers and other quilt makers. I can. But I won’t. All I will say is I will do my very best to extend that grace and mercy and seek reconciliation when I can.

God bless!


One thought on “Pondering: Paying attention

  1. Teri, sometimes Mass isn’t all God wants you to experience when you go to church. Sometimes His message is in the music as it was for you. Or in the stained glass panel that catches your eye or other members of the congregation that sit nearby… Like the Rosary, sometimes Mass is a meditation starter. It’s how God gets us to focus on what He wants us to get out of it. Prayerfully yours, Susan

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