I woke this morning to a dream of grace. All night it had rained. Mo and I took our morning walk through the mists, circling the yard, seeing how fine John's king maple tree looks with its clusters of yellow and crimson flowers that bloom now where leaves soon will be. Mo pays more attention to the bigger trees that aren't surrounded by fencing to keep the deer away. In a mood for running, Mo strained against his leash and I tried to keep up without tripping over my nightgown.

For years rain has signaled the presence of grace. Dreams visit me. Veils of rain through which women dance. Rain that accompanies birth. Rain that accompanies death. The other day I walked in it, not covering my head, lifting my face, feeling it in my hair and on my eyelashes—like children do, like I did as a child. Now I am almost old and the rain still falls. Greening.

Before the beauty of the rain I'm helpless. Soak me!

All day I meditated upon grace. There is a talk I agreed to give, and to prepare I've done my research and now am letting what I've learned, what I've experienced through the years, and what I see along the pathways here at Sunshine Hill flow into one another and combine. You have to be wet for such a miracle. Music is important. I listened to "Pie Jesu" from REQUIEM, to "Clohine Winds," and to the aching "Helpless." That's it, I think. Everything has its rain—everything is wet inside. All is grace. Can I see? Can I feel? Can I hear? Do I have the eyes, the ears, the skin for it? The heart? Am I willing each moment to release myself to the reality in front of me, can I melt?

At the end of the novel by Georg Bernanos, DIARY OF A COUNTRY PRIEST, the priest has lost everything. He's walking away from his parish down a country road, and someone calls out to him, "Where will you go?" The priest turns and says, "It doesn't matter. Everything is grace." A nun-friend of mine once told me we have to look through our eyelashes to see it—grace. I think she meant we need to let go of our certainties about what we know, about what we see. It would be like looking at everyone and everything through rain.

We see the world soft. We maybe, even, see God, and the rain of that Grace can leave us helpless for anything but yes.

Thanks again to Krista Karels for the photo.


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