Calvary Episcopal Church
Memphis, Tennessee


The 20th Sunday after Pentecost
October 10, 1999
Volume 44, No. 38

A Story Told Me by an Old Woman in a Nursing Home
The first thing I noticed about her is that she was so completely at peace. So I asked her about it, and this is the story she told:
"When I was young I was so active and energetic. I loved hiking, sailing and gazing at stars in the deep of night. I spent a lot of time in the inner city too, working with children of poverty. It seemed my heart was most content when my body was most active. And my deepest prayer was grounded in the fullness of this love relationship I had with the world around me . . . Then illness struck, and I've been here ever since. It wasn't giving up my active life that was hardest though - I also lost the prayer that had flowed from it so abundantly. One day a total stranger stopped in to visit, and for some reason I told him about losing my ability to pray. After a moment's quiet he asked me how I spend my days here. I said, 'About all I can do now is knit.' 'So tomorrow,' he said, 'before you begin, close your eyes for a moment and whisper this: God, I'm going to be knitting now in your presence.' So that's what I did. And gradually that deep well of prayer began to fill up again, and to my surprise I began to find life's fullness again where I had thought there was only emptiness - in the long slow days, in the apple tree outside my window, in the song of the night crickets. I guess fullness, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder."

I believe her discovery is good for us too. Let's try it. For me, "God, I am writing now in your presence." For you, "God, I am reading now in your presence." For all of us, "Every moment, God, we are living in your presence, for nothing can separate us from the love of God - ever."
~Peggy Gunness+

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