“Dear Granny,” I wrote on her special occasion, “It is lovely to celebrate this birthday with you. Before my friends met you, they expected to see a frail lady, but they were surprised to find that you were full of life. Love always, Gavin”.
As I reflect on the whole experience of my Granny’s life and death since my last video (Gratitude in my Granny), I am grateful for a new appreciation of our relationship. I draw strength from our faith which we shared. I often saw her, for example, praying the rosary in her room. She said her prayers silently while going from bead to bead with her fingers. I felt comforted during these times, especially when I felt a little raw and vulnerable. We were in good, loving company and I cherish this memory today.
A testimony of the life and death of my grandmother Una. As I reflect on our relationship, I realise that I’m not necessarily grateful ‘for’ all things. But I am grateful for digging deep to find gratitude ‘in’ all things. RIP Granny.
The song I Will Wait by Mumford & Sons includes the lyrics: “Now I’ll be bold, as well as strong, and use my head alongside my heart”. The chorus repeats: “And I will wait, I will wait for you”. The singers describe a connection and journey with another person, as well as mutual understanding, humility and intimacy. It is a call to build a relationship on a solid foundation where love freely flows. Of course, we all want to feel safe and secure, but where do we begin?
Don’t take it for granted. Peace is the most precious gift in the world, even better than winning the Euro Millions lottery. For what good is it to be loaded with cash and luxury when you have a monkey mind, a mind of wild horses, a mind of an elephant in rut?
Part of my staycation was to visit Hook Lighthouse in County Wexford, reportedly the oldest operational lighthouse in the world. Monks from Wales originally built a solid structure followed by Normans who greatly added to it. Modernizers maintained its sturdiness and now its electric lamp is operated from Dún Laoghaire in Dublin. Without stone upon stone, the light would not be seen.
I think of a bride from the recent explosion in Beirut. The chemicals blasted through the city and around Israa Seblani as she was being videoed on her special day. Before the explosion, she wondered if her parents were going to be happy seeing her in a white dress. Beauty was like a lamp that she could see in herself. After the explosion, she saw the damage that happened to Beirut – her lamp was still shining in the face of evil. Continue reading “From the lighthouse”→
I went into my bedroom and felt drawn to kneel on my meditation mat. The view didn’t seem very photogenic, but I photographed it anyway. As I did so, I felt one with the universe for a moment or two. I felt humbled by the gesture of kneeling. I felt as though this is where I belonged. As I look at the photo now, I feel content knowing that I will return to this kneeling posture before I go to bed. It also evokes a warmth knowing that many Christians have gone before me to praise and honour their closest friend. Continue reading “Kneeling knights”→
I am aware that not all of us grow older gracefully, not even all of our grandparents and great-grandparents. We do not all become naturally mellow and light-hearted, forgiving and free. Perhaps this speaks of rigidity and strictness. Perhaps our years can tighten us up and choke our gratitude. Continue reading “Who choked our gratitude?”→
“I am with you always, yes, to the end of time” – Matthew 28:20.
Habit of praise
There was a turning point during the lockdown when I realised that my old way of living was not sustainable. I fell into a depression and felt a lack of joy. I got in touch with a contemplative nun who prompted me to turn to praise through the Divine Office, a form of daily prayer with the church worldwide. I did it for a few days in a row and felt the return of an inner sunshine. Later, I adapted it by choosing more personal readings and songs. I now find both silent and vocal prayer to be a recipe for wellness. Continue reading “New life, new normal”→
A creative video on how we spend time with our family or community during the Covid-19 crisis. God speaks to the inner critic, the inner observer and the inbetweener again, asking: “What would you say to a family or community member whose cracks are beginning to show? How would you treat them?” Scripture: Matthew 7: 1-5.Continue reading “Value of time: 3 of 3”→