Anything is Possible!

With Hope, Faith, and Perseverance


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Peace Like A River

Song Lyric Sunday

I couldn’t pass up Helen’s theme of peace for today’s “Song Lyric Sunday.”

I’ve always felt “Peace Like a River” was an old song. Some sites list it as African American Spiritual. But I’ve also seen John O. Schroeder identified as the author. It feels like a spiritual to me. One nice thing about this song is that it’s easy to learn. Some versions are faster, but I picked a relaxing one for this Sunday afternoon.  I hope you enjoy it.

I’ve got peace like a river,
I’ve got peace like a river,
I’ve got peace like a river in my soul.
I’ve got peace like a river,
I’ve got peace like a river,
I’ve got peace like a river in my soul.

2. I’ve got joy like a fountain,
I’ve got joy like a fountain,
I’ve got joy like a fountain in my soul.
I’ve got joy like a fountain,
I’ve got joy like a fountain,
I’ve got joy like a fountain in my soul.

3. I’ve got love like an ocean,
I’ve got love like an ocean,
I’ve got love like an ocean in my soul.
I’ve got love like an ocean,
I’ve got love like an ocean,
I’ve got love like an ocean in my soul.

Lyrics found here.

For more on “Song Lyric Sunday,” and more peace songs, visit:

https://helenswordsoflife.com/2017/10/21/song-lyric-sunday-theme-for-102217/


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Serving at Cursillo: a Spiritual Weekend

 

Trinity Center pond

My weekend was intense, busy, and very social. I knew it would be outside my comfort zone, but I was asked to be on the music team, and I wanted to give back for all the blessings I’ve received. Leaning heavily toward introversion, I’m more comfortable finding my spiritual moments alone in quiet places, but thankfully, I found God in many varied moments during my four days serving at “EC 95” (The 95th Cursillo weekend of the East Carolina Episcopal Diocese.)

Cursill is a three day adventure for 20 pilgrims who are there to learn about Christian leadership and to be loved and served by the team. One of the common experiences shared by pilgrims was a deeper relationship with Jesus and one another. As a team member serving the pilgrims, I felt this deepening, too. Even with the lack of sleep from late nights and early mornings, even with my occasional discomfort from being around  many people who I didn’t know well, I felt the deepening. I felt the love for people who became family.

It helped that our Cursillo weekend was held at Trinity Center, a place close to nature and close to my heart, where they build around the trees.

Tree in deck

Trinity is an Episcopal retreat center nestled on the North Carolina coast between Bogue Sound and the Atlantic Ocean.

Sunset at Sander's Point (2)

ocean from the pavilion

One of my favorite places at Trinity Center, besides the beach….  and the sound….. and the pond….

pond throug trees (3)

Trinity Center pond

…is the tunnel that runs under the main road and leads to the beach.

tunnel sign

tunnel entrance

tunnel with turtle

The tunnel is a great place to sing. Imagine the echo. Or is it called reverb?

On Friday afternoon, as I walked the wooded road to my room during a short break, I stopped to admire the light shining through the leaves ahead.

path of connection with Mom and Dad (2)

It was here that I felt the powerful and undeniable presence of my parents. They “told” me (in feelings more than words) of their joy that I was there serving with my husband, and that they are proud of us both. My parents had a long history of ministry in soup kitchens and working with veterans. This is the first time I’ve felt them both together since my father died in January. The confirmation that they are together still makes my heart sing.

djembe purple background

I finally got me a Djembe!

And I did a lot of singing at Cursillo. As part of the music team, I sang, played my guitar, and got to experiment with the new drum I bought for this occasion.

Cursillo music is mostly folksy with some contemporary praise songs. When somebody requested “Wade In the Water,” we had to hunt for the music because it wasn’t on our song list. But it turned out to be such a big hit, we sang this powerful spiritual three times during the weekend. This article explains that “Harriet Tubman used the song “Wade in the Water” to tell escaping slaves to get off the trail and into the water to make sure the dogs slavecatchers used couldn’t sniff out their trail.” 

The following arrangement, while different than the simple version we sang, gives a feeling close to what I felt during our closing service singing with about 50 people and three guitars as I kept a strong, steady beat on my drum.

In spite of the intensity, I’m thankful to have served at EC 95. But some day,  I want to go to Trinity Center just to relax. I bet I’ll do some singing and wading, too.

Silver beach (2)


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Positive Reframing

Harlon, at “A Patient Voice” invited me to share my positive re-framing of his list here, and after my morning stream of consciousness, I realized I could use a dose of my own medicine.

So here it is:

Start now, as you remind yourself.

To do things that are good for you.

Take steps, now.

Before a crash that may not come

Before the fall that offers rest

Take things with a grain of salt although it may be hard.

Be your unique and wonderful self, although it’s hard sometimes.

Live free from the trap.

Leave well enough alone. (Let it Be.)

Nurture your spiritual and mental well-being.

Take care and be well.

Walk forward now

For now belongs to you.

I am frequently moved by Harlon’s honesty and his big heart. If you haven’t been to his blog, check it out: https://apatientvoice.com/


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Spiritual Nudges

Bargain Center

I’m supposed to be doing something here.

It was more than a thought. It was a nudge, almost physical, like a gentle push on the back of my shoulder, as my husband and I stood in the dining room of the Rescue Mission.

I’d shopped at their thrift store a few times, and referred homeless clients there over the years, but I’d never taken a tour, until Larry, the resident manager, started going to our church and invited us over for a visit.

I’m supposed to be doing something here, kept popping up in my head as Larry showed us around and explained the 90 day program.

Up to 17 men live at the mission at any given time. SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESThey wake up at 5am to get ready for morning chapel and breakfast.

The men work in the thrift store Tuesday through Saturday, for the first thirty days, after which they can get a job or continue to work in the store. On Mondays, they take care of personal business, like counseling appointments, health care, and job interviews.

Mission Donation  drop off

Bargain Center  IMG_1218

Larry told us they hoped to develop a women and children’s program within the next couple of years.

“I’m supposed to be doing something here,” I said out loud. (I’d probably already said it more than once.) Then added, “What do you need in the way of volunteers?”

“Well, need people to lead morning chapel, and also Wednesday evening chapel,” Larry said.  He explained that chapel is thirty minutes, and focuses on the love of Jesus Christ.

My husband and I talked it over. Since I’m not a morning person, we arranged to lead Wednesday evening chapel alternating weeks with another couple from our church.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESIn July, it will be two years since we started volunteering at the mission. We’ve gotten to know some of the men of the mission, their stories, their challenges, and their hopes for the future. Some residents can stay longer than 90 days, if they’re working on goals, and some have become staff. They become like family.

You can read some of their stories here:

http://wilmingtonfavs.com/2014/02/06/men-mission-mr-willie/

In December, seemingly out of the blue, my husband was asked to interview for the position of director of the mission. They needed some one who would oversee both the men’s program and the new women and children’s program. My husband was hired for the position in January. He loves his work and says he had been practicing for years for this job, though he didn’t know this is where he would be.

You might have read about my longing to get back to creating art. Well, the mission is located in a revitalized art and antique district and will be joining in the monthly gallery walk, featuring local artists. We’re calling it “Art at the Mission.” Guess who was the first artist to sign up?   I’m happily busy, creating some new pieces to offer and excited at the prospect of bringing more people into the thrift store. Contributing a portion to my earnings to the mission will make it a win-win adventure.

I had no idea that the  nudge I felt so clearly almost two years ago, would lead to my husband getting a job he loves and me selling art at the Rescue Mission.

But I believe God had an idea.

I’m wondering: Have you ever felt a nudge? How did it effect your life?