To be eirenic is to be aimed at peace, oriented toward reconciliation. As a centering prayer I have adopted the prayer attributed to St. Frances, Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. So, that is why I call my website Eirenicole – a composite of eirenic and Nicole.
For Lent, we are using the book, The Art of Lent: A Painting a Day From Ash Wednesday to Easter, by Sister Wendy Beckett. This week, the theme is confidence. Our meditation for today is entitled, “Absolute Trust,” and the focus of our attention will be on the painting, Sacrifice of Abraham, 1994, Albert Herbert. The image is included in the post for this podcast, and accompanies the places where this is posted. If you do not have access to the photo, but do have access to internet, you can google “Sacrifice of Abraham, 1994, Albert Herbert.”
Lean into your space. Allow gravity to anchor you.
Your breath, filling you with life-giving oxygen;
Each exchange of o2 with carbon dioxide, cleansing that which is spent.
Notice your surroundings; what do you pass over each day?
Where have your thoughts repeatedly traveled?
Pay attention to them. Recognize these preoccupations.
Sit with this realization a bit. And let them be.
Breathe in a cleansing breath of new air, new life.
Breathe out gratitude for this life.
Breathe in the truth that God knows you.
As you breathe out, exhale a prayer of surrender.
Continue breathing in and out, allow the Spirit to saturate, to fill you with peace.
Pay attention to God’s invitation to be present.
Settle into the peace of Christ as you listen. Hear the mediation and notice what the spirit of God draws your attention to in this painting. What is Jesus speaking to you here, now?
“The Abraham and his only son Isaac …. a true judgement and then cleave to it, whatever the appearances.”Sister Wendy Beckett
Two gigantic acts of trust. Both based on knowledge of the other person and of God.
It is no difficult task to pass judgment on another’s behavior. See a thing and determine: that’s not right; that’s not how it ought to be done. But when we stop hacking away at the surface of a thing, perhaps a knife will no longer be needed.
You see, when we judge a thing as evil when it is from God, we commit an unforgivable sin. But when we judge a thing as good, when it is not from God, there is forgiveness.
Because every good gift, any goodness comes from God, the Source of Light, Truth. It is better to judge a thing as good and be wrong about it, than to rush to judgement about what may, on the surface, be apart from God’s goodness.
Isn’t it better to err on seeing goodness wherever I can?
Yet, to do so, again, is vulnerable. Trusting another to hold nothing but goodness and love toward me is risky. Because we all have been hurt by someone, and done harm against another.
But maybe the hurt comes more from an expectation of how that goodness and love ought to look. Maybe I haven’t taken time and space to know you more, and understand what it means to love and be loved by you. Maybe, even if it seems like madness, if I take my eyes off my own insipid ideas of what love ought to look like and trust you want to love in return.
Maybe we will see God, true Love, already radiant in each other.
May you confidently know Love and cleave to it today; and may you walk at the pace of grace.