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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A Prayer for Aunt Jean

A Vineyard house the Beauchamp sisters loved.

My mother died January, 2010.
Her younger sister died August, 2011
Her older sister died February, 2012. 
My Aunt Jean died today. I will miss the sound of her laughter. She left me with some cherished memories; so many of them include laughter.  
In looking for solace in the face of another loss, I turned to an essay I wrote a couple of years ago, called, “Prayer Works.”  I was reflecting upon how my habits of prayer have changed over the years.  And here is what I said about praying in my fifties:
In my fifties, I have, once again, devised a different approach to prayer.  It combines the magic of childhood, the quiet, stillness of my twenties, the letting go of my thirties and the prayer in motion of my forties.   Prayer is more than desire; it is intention.  The prayer of my fifties starts with mindfulness. I hold an awareness of that moment, letting it expand into my total consciousness.  Gradually, I let thoughts and concerns drift through without latching too hard onto any one of them.  They come, they go, with each breath.  A refrain of GodGodGodGod taps out in a whisper at the edge of my awareness.  The last part of my prayers involves being aware of what happens next.  Expect and look for good things and they arrive. Ask for help, it comes.  Sometimes in a form or in a manner I could never have imagined or considered.  Most often in a time frame that I find frustrating.  However, with patience and time, I see order in all that transpires.  I understand I am one small part of a much larger mosaic.  Prayer lifts me and brings me joy even when I have lagging faith. I have learned that faith is a rugged weed and not easily exterminated.  Even for an experienced gardener.
The Methodist Church on the
Martha's Vineyard Campgrounds

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