A Safe Space

“Hospitality is . . .

the creation of a safe, inviting, trustworthy space

– an atmosphere as much as a place.”

– Krista Tippett* –

 

Nourish peace, cultivate loving kindness, and carry the calm into your gatherings with family and friends. May you yourself be a safe inviting, trustworthy space. May you be hospitality.

Nature of the week – sun through leaves creates a stained-glass window effect:

stndglslvs1

Shadow of the Week – morning shadows on my kitchen blinds:

shdwblinds

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For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

*From On Being‘s Civil Conversations project, which I highly recommend.

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

 

In Nature’s Cathedral

 

 

In Nature’s Cathedral

“The blue sky is the temple’s arch,

Its transept earth and air,

The music of its starry march

The chorus of a prayer.”

– John Greenleaf Whittier –

 

Pause for a moment whenever you step outdoors this week. Look up and take in the cathedral of nature. Join the chorus of its prayer.

And as always, nourish peace, cultivate loving kindness, and carry the calm.

Nature of the week:

mooncrapemyrtle

Shadow of the Week:

ptonshdw1

If you want to receive these thoughts by email each week, simply sign up on the right.

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

 

I Have Loved the Stars

 

 

I Have Loved the Stars

“I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night.”

– Sarah Williams –

Even when stars are not visible – in daylight or under cloud cover at night – they are still there. And when life around us seems cloudy and dark, love is still there. Love holds steady. Grace holds. Kindness holds. These are our stars in the darkness. If we locate them, we can trust them to guide us on our journey; out of trust, hope is born. Step toward love. Step toward grace. Step toward kindness. And carry the calm.

Nature of the week:

jpmaplefall

Shadow of the Week:

shdwbtls

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

 

The Essential Invisible

 

 

The Essential Invisible

“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly;

what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry –

In this busy holiday season, pause each day to look up, look out, and see with the heart.

And as always, nourish peace, cultivate loving kindness, and carry the calm.

Nature of the week:

lfsdballsky

Shadow of the Week – from the bottom of the stairs, a shadow of my grandcat at the top:

catshadow

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here. karynhenley.com

 

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

 

 

Gardeners Who Make Our Souls Blossom

 

Gardeners Who Make Our Souls Blossom

“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy.

They are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”

– Marcel Proust –

I hope you get to spend Thanksgiving with people who make you happy. Take a few moments to still yourself, allow peace to settle over you, and let your soul blossom with gratitude. It’s rich heart-soil, especially for nurturing calm.

I’m grateful for you, thankful that you share my hope of nourishing peace, cultivating loving kindness, and carrying calm into the world.

Nature of the week:

yelmums

Shadow of the Week – me and my daughter-in-law in shadow on a still pond – with turtles:

cwyshdlk

 

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

 

White as Wings of Prayer

 

 

White as Wings of Prayer

“The mists above the morning rills

Rise white as wings of prayer.”

– John Greenleaf Whittier –

 

Need a bit of solace for your soul? Gently soar on the soft music and prayerlike, birdlike wings of this kinetic sculpture, Diffusion Choir. It’s short, and it’s amazing.

Nourish peace, cultivate loving kindness, and carry the calm.

Nature of the week – fragrant ginger, still blooming here in November!

ginger

Shadow of the Week:

shdwflrspikes

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

 

Cares Will Drop Away

 

 

Cares Will Drop Away

“Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees.

The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy,

while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.”

– John Muir, Our National Parks –

 

Calm seems to be in short supply these days. All the more reason to intentionally call time-out for yourself – two minutes, five minutes, thirty minutes, whatever you can manage. Slow down, don’t relive or prelive but simply live for a moment in the moment. Find a bit of nature to observe, listen to, smell, and touch. It may be as large as the sky and a path through the woods, or as small as a blade of grass, a fallen leaf, or a pebble cupped in the palm of your hand. Exhale the panicked ugliness that has seeped in from current events, and inhale nature’s faithful beauty. Exhale tension; inhale calm. Let the wind blow its freshness into you. Let your cares drop away “like the leaves of Autumn.”

Nourish peace, cultivate loving kindness, and carry the calm. We need you.

Nature of the week:

fallvacreeper

Shadow of the Week – found on a bench:

ptonbenchshdw

 

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

 

When the Time is Ripe

 

 

When the Time is Ripe

“Time ripens all things.

No man is born wise.”

– Miguel de Cervantes –

 

Take the time to nourish peace and cultivate loving kindness. Carry the calm.

Nature of the week:

pinecone

Shadow of the Week – shamrock shadows:

shamrkshdw

 

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

 

Like Steps of Passing Ghosts

 

 

Like Steps of Passing Ghosts

“Listen . . .

With faint dry sound,

Like steps of passing ghosts,

The leaves, frost-crisp’d, break from the trees

And fall.”

– Adelaide Crapsey –

 

Nourish peace, cultivate loving kindness, and carry the calm.

Nature of the week – blooms and berries:

clwyorblm

Shadow of the Week:

grassshdwbrick

 

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.

 

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

 

Shifty Wind, Secret Stories

 

 

 

Shifty Wind, Secret Stories

“Already it is October, and the wind blows strong to the sea

from the hills where snow must have fallen,

the wind is polished with snow.”

– D.H. Lawrence, “Butterfly” –

The shifty wind

swirls with stories –

a girl’s kite plucked high,

a beachcomber’s hair ruffled,

a gardener’s hat tossed into the rose bush,

a cafe awning dismantled,

a dog’s nose kissed.

Secret stories

shared with the wind.

“Here’s a hint,”

it whispers,

brushing past

polished with snow,

laden with rain,

woven with wood smoke.

Hush. Hush.

Listen. Listen.

It’s your story too.

 

Again from D.H. Lawrence: “[T]he wind blows strong . . . from the hills where snow must have fallen, the wind is polished with snow.” How beautiful it would be if people who meet us could say, “She lives strong in a place where calm must have settled. Her spirit is polished with peace.”

Nourish peace, cultivate loving kindness, and carry the calm.

Nature of the week – looking up and up and up:

clwytalltree

Shadow of the Week, dripping over stone:

shdwstnwall

 

Text and photos © 2016 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

For my posts on coming of age in a community of faith, link here.