Breath taking. Life giving.

From Sacred Space, a prayer site maintained by the Jesuits:

To be conscious about something is to be aware of it. Dear Lord help me to remember that You gave me life. Thank you for the gift of life. Teach me to slow down, to be still and enjoy the pleasures created for me.
To be aware of the beauty that surrounds me. The marvel of mountains, the calmness of lakes, the fragility of a flower petal. I need to remember that all these things come from you.

The last couple of days, I have been awed by beauty. Some of it has been the beauty of the natural world around me as autumn has turned the world to gold and fire.

But more, I’ve been awed by the beauty of human souls, carrying heavy burdens through this world with more faith and hope and love than I think I will ever possess.

I have had the wind knocked out of me a few times, just seeing from a distance the breathtaking grief that others have born. But I needed the wind knocked out of me.

I was mostly using that breath to mutter complaints, anyway. And now I’ve caught my breath again, I’m trying, by grace, to mutter prayers of gratitude.

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