Snow, sleet and what was that?

January 28th

My last day as pastoral point of contact for Millstreet & Killarney, a small voluntary thing I have been doing for a few months. Last night “the man” said women can multitask, us men can only do one thing at a time. On the way home I pondered on this and wondered: do women neglect prayer life because we are doing something else at the same time. And then I remembered suggesting to a friend that she attend a craft workshop, not because either of us had an interest in the particular craft but because by our hands being busy with a menial, fussy little job our minds and hearts can fly free. This morning I was cooking (Polish slow cooked stew with smoked pork sausages, an Irish salad {lettuce, tomatoes and cucumber}, warm baguettes, pasta and a particularly hot & spicy chutney come pickle) and there was much cutting and shredding, simmering but no eviscerating. I was praying for each member of both congregations as I worked, I thought back over the last one hundred and five days, almost a third of a year.

{it certainly never felt that long}

I thought of conversations, controversies, personalities and all manner of expected and unexpected components. The blessings, the challenges, the confrontations, the agreements, the meetings, services, bible studies. On Sunday a very special group of people gathered around me and prayed mightily for me and for God’s will to be done, it was one of those entirely red-letter moments that I will treasure. I thought of all the new people who have come into my life in the last few months and of those who have departed. Gosh I had a jolly good think. I had to think about the wobble, the shape & feel of it, the colour of it and its odour. I thank God that it has departed,and I am once again on full throttle. People who have limited energy don’t like boundless energy. I don’t like sleet but I do like snow. Sunday was also the day I realised I passed someone out, not in a crow-ee way but in the way they deferred to me. I have only met this person intermittently over the past number of years but I always saw the relationship the other way around. Amazing how our perception can be skewed by rhetoric. The stew possibly took longer to cook because of all this praying and introspection, but it is tasty and I look forward to dishing it up tonight.

This afternoon I did nothing but reflect & pray and I kind of got my answer. When we are working through a prayer menial tasks help but when we are praying from the heart specifically we have to give it our entire attention… and finally

Question: When is it okay to say ‘I don’t know’?

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