Contemplating “our daily bread” lately, in my world, makes more sense imagined like this image — but it feels good and satisfying and I want to capture that. That’s where this photo came from, a place in my soul that says, “take joy”…even if that is more instructive than felt presently. I’m on my way.
Yeah, today — this first fresh day of the Biblical year 5779 — I have sought my Creator for the bread beyond the warmest, softest, bread this side of heaven. I have sought Him for the bread my soul can’t live without because I have seen my need, AND THAT’S NOT BAD NEWS. And THAT, that is sweetness to my soul to know more profoundly than I’ve ever known it before.
It means I don’t have to be afraid when troubles come today, it means I can listen for the words of truth and need washing in on the tide of my children’s misbehavior or emotions. This has been a long time coming, a long time forming inside me. It’s been a lot of tears, and ache, and wondering where I went wrong…all to finally understand that was the wrong question. But that’s what we do when we lose sight or simply don’t know we’re on our way.
I was missing the hope, of the present. And I’ll miss it again, the gift, that I get to make one more tiny, little, decision — now. A decision to love. And that is everything that daily bread purposes to nurture inside us, and is intended for us to give away, on the way. Love that is yes, long-suffering, kind, not envious, competitive or boastful, arrogant or rude, making the way for others — for the joy, not with irritation or resentment (because it’s not about us), but taking joy in the reality of our unity, bearing, persevering, enduring — with hope.
Without troubles I never would have known love, because I never would have heard its invitation — the invitation that comes more like the beauty of a long-exposure photograph than it does in a perfectly timed, in-focus one.
We wonder at its fuzziness, its quiet tug to look closer, to get lower. But, that’s alright, we’re on our way.
I thought it would take me longer to return here to write because there is so much to do these days, but this always happens to me…I write because I need to write. I told myself there was too much else to do, but truth is, I don’t do any of “all those things” at my best if I am not processing out-loud through the written word. Especially when I don’t think I have the words to do so, that’s when I must try. A lack of words or connected thoughts is not my cue to sit back, that’s a treasure map on the table before me, inviting me.
Here now, after jumping into the shadowy, rolling, landscape the map portrays, I look up and around. Fuzzy again, but something clear…I see the moon’s thinnest crescent, a sliver of a secret to tell me renewal is coming. My heart does not fail at what used to seem little, instead it hopes —because, like Paul, I’ve heard the secret of contentment. “I am content with weakness, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:10)
This wonderful secret, this sliver of a secret, just like our daily bread…be it fruity or buttery…that hints to us of the infinite-now, it never ends. We’ll not be satisfied with a taste, this is the kind of banquet that our hearts hunger to go home to the land where the food is born, to the ground of its conception. And when we lie there in the ground, humble —which is to be whole— and the wind blows and the year renews, we’ll become new again too, ever on…
So. Welcome, my friends, to what the sages of Israel call The Ten Days of Awe. Maybe you know about this, maybe you don’t? Ten days where introspection can be healthy. Ten days to journey to the source of our daily bread, and be fed. Ten days to turn around from those rabbit trails we started following because we forgot, it’s not about arriving, it’s about knowing we’re on our way, and that is not only enough, it’s the way of Mercy, and that is perfect.
With you in the longing,
P.S. I hope you’ve taken some moments to try out or continue your own practice of body scanning/ stress releasing this past month. The Ten Days of Awe are a good time, even in baby step form, to release and receive. I’m praying for us all.
Also, I know I saaaid I was going to write less often. I was wrong.
If you haven’t already subscribed, I’d love it if you did. I’ll send you my poem, Bound by Light, to say welcome and thank you.
All photos copyright Raynna Myers 2018