Weekly Devotional by Jody Gyulay - March 6, 2019
 Tight, Squirmy Places

I have a corner kitchen cabinet that pulls out with a sliding cabinet within. I use it for leftover containers. Some fell out in the back preventing the lower shelf from moving in place. I emptied the lower shelf, crawled inside to fetch the fallen containers. I had to lay over a 3”  lip on the lower shelf and try to reach the errant plastic containers. The grabber doodad didn’t work. Short arms didn’t work. I crawled further inside. There I was head first encased in the shelf. The thought that if I died they would greet me rump first in the cabinet and wonder what the hell (a religious term) I was doing. I started to laugh. Bruised and sore I finally got the errant containers. I think I will fill them with sauerkraut!…I have reorganized.

How many times have each of us been in tight, squirmy places? We live in a society that is fast and furiously paced where over-achieving, greed driven, outer perfectionism, money god… are culprits. When we mindfully choose to slow down (not neglecting our responsibilities) we can have a better perspective on life. We can come to the realization that we create most, if not all, our problems, as the Buddha taught. Even if others create issues for us, our response[s} can make us upset, angry, apathetic, creative, problem-solving and/or calm centeredness.

It is hard to be in hard places. We may feel there is no way out, humiliated, embarrassed, frustrated, at the least, or mindfully figure our way out. Never-ending lessons can be learned from these tough situations - we have choices —  survival, become ‘victim’, or initiate the gift of gratitude for adjusting, unraveling, settling in or peace-filled resolve…it is a choice.

We need to tender ourselves during these difficult times. The Buddha taught that our hearts quiver in the face of suffering, our own and others. Often when we hear the suffering of another we unconsciously place our hands over our heart and comment on their pain. When self-compassion is practiced it opens our beautiful heart to unlimited compassion for others.

So in crunchy times of life, caught tightly in what seems like a cell of pain, imprisoned in mental judgments, we need to gently be aware of the quivery-ness of our loving, compassionate, generous, tender heart. What beautiful lessons to open the expansiveness of our own being touching the un-limitlessness of fellow travelers in this rugged, arduous journey of life…correcting what needs to be changed. 

A practice that may be helpful when you find ourself in emotional, physical, social, mental and/or spiritual pain: place your hands in front of your heart as if tendering the quivering of suffering to the expansiveness of unconditional love —burying judgment, anger, self-deprecation.

Oh gracious Creator, you made us in your image and likeness, yet, this human life, as you know, presents very sticky states that glue our fear, anger, shame and guilt. Please release us from this gooey mess to the joy of knowing who we really are … divine and human …stickiness dissolved .. now freedom. What peace knowing You love us front to rump. Amen

Saint Andrew Pastoral Partners
The Saint Andrew Pastoral Partners offer support when you have joys and/or concerns to share, need prayers, or someone to talk to.  We also are available for hospital visits, reaching out to those that are in need or members we haven’t see in awhile, working with your Covenant Group and new members.

Some of our responsibilities include serving communion and sharing the Prayer of Thanksgiving.  We also help out with special services such as the Ash Wednesday, Easter Sunrise Service,  Remembrance Service and Christmas Eve Services.  

Each week we will list three of our Pastoral Partners. Please don’t hesitate to contact them!
Lois Penn - loispenn@yahoo.com
Jane Gonzalez - ej.gonzalez@sbcglobal.net
Jamie Frazier - frazier.jk@gmail.com

13890 W. 127th Street Olathe, KS 66062
Telephone: 913.764.5888  |  Fax: 913.764.4692  |  Email: office@sacchome.org