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aprayercircleAgain yesterday I was reminded of the importance of spiritual practice but this time that message came in a group gathering. Five of the seven members of our “practice circle” who were able to be present came together in Estelle’s lovely living room for what has become an increasingly important monthly meeting. As we first checked in with present events in our personal lives – some painful or difficult – we also expressed our gratitude for the sunshine and promise of spring (regardless of the 25 degree temperature and mounds of snow outside!) as well as our enthusiasm for being together.

The afternoon unfolded in chanting, our gestured prayer leading to 20 minutes of what was profound silent meditation, lectio divina (reflection on a timely passage written in the early 1900’s), more chanting and a shorter, 10-minute centering prayer period. As we prepared to leave, our final “check-out” comments were all about gratitude for the deep sharing – both verbal and silent – that left us feeling uplifted and/or more able to proceed with life.

Driving away as I reflected on the importance of such experiences, a long revered adage floated through my brain. Christ is the peace between us, I remembered, and I smiled with thanksgiving to God.