Kelly Hayes Thorson - AZ Outreach
As you read these thoughts, remember that anytime we are thinking about God, we are in His house.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjVi0CDicEQ Father’s House by Cory Ashbury
This is the beginning of week 9 and I am sad. So much is different and will continue to be different. I’m
trying to stand strong on God’s word, but I struggle. God and I have been doing a lot of talking lately, and I
have come to understand that it’s ok to question God. The book of Psalms is full of praise, questioning, and
lamenting. Author and poet, Kathleen Norris says, “the Psalms are poetry, and poetry’s function is not to
explain but to offer images and stories that resonate with our lives.” That’s what I am trying to do in these
times, pay attention to the images and stories that God gives me and see how He wants them to work in
my life. God sent me this song one morning and it says it all.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a6LC8cu03Ig Thy Word by Amy Grant
As I am writing this, I am still sad, but I know God is with me in all my questioning and sadness. He sends
me songs that make me smile and bring tears pouring down my face. Life will be different, but God will be
there with me, with us because He is the God of All My Days.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYkZE8AogDE God of All My Days by Casting Crowns
POSTPONED TIL FURTHER NOTICE
Christ Church Episcopal
National Annual Gathering
To be held Virtually
Zoom Happy Hour
March 17, 2021
Link on the Events Page
Karen Weires - Communications
Canta el gallo,
Canta el gallo con el quiri, quiri, quiri, quiri, qui....
My mother has been in California helping my brother with his kids during the pandemic for over 3 months. It is time for her to come home. I am here to get her. To travel with her. And to visit my brother and his family, whom I haven't seen since Christmas 2019. It has been a time of family. We have laughed, argued, worked and played. It has been a good trip.
Except for the rooster.
I grew up in Iowa. I am no stranger to farm animals. I currently live in Old Henderson, the part some refer to as "Hendertucky". There are horse properties nearby. There are farm animals.
But in my heart I am a city girl. I do not like roosters.
There is a rooster living next door to my brother..In the Mission District in San Francisco.,,In the middle of the city!
This stupid chicken (I say this because "dumb rooster" doesn't have the same punch) crows all day long. Starts up about 3am.. I have NOT enjoyed this part of my visit. I have contemplated chicken murder on several occasions. Dreamt of chicken and waffles for breakfast (ok, my brother is vegan, this idea does not go over well in this house.. and yes, I know you can't eat rooster, it's too tough... but the thought still satisfies)
But this morning as I lay in the dark listening to this rooster sing his song, I started to think about what message I could take from it. What positive spin could I make, to turn my frustration and irritation into something better.
The rooster doesn't know he's waking me up. He doesn't know he's irritating me. He's just doing what roosters do. And what roosters do is crow. So I googled, "why do roosters crow" and I learned something.
I learned that roosters crow to announce that all is right with the world. They crow to communicate with other roosters. To check in on their loved ones, the way we might send a text or an email. They crow to wake up the flock, to tell them it's time to forage (the early bird gets the worm), they crow to signal alarm. And they crow to signal the "all clear". The rooster is vigilant, aware, alert. Sees things that others don't see. Alerts to the dangers present and alerts to the dangers passed. The rooster, it turns out, crows to lead, to protect, and mostly, to communicate.
The rooster, it seems, is just like me.
So now, armed with this new information, I lay in the dark and I listen to the rooster crowing with different ears. I think about the other roosters and chickens that he's calling to. I think about his isolation in that yard. I think about how he is calling out to connect with other chickens. to check in with his flock.. He is driven to this by his nature. He is not trying to irritate. He is trying to communicate. Just like me.
The rooster crows again...
The De Colores song comes to mind.... "Canta el gallo..."
And then, I think of Saint Peter.. . I think of Peter's promise to Jesus, that he would never fall away. And Jesus' admonishment that he would, in fact, deny him 3 times before the cock crowed. In spite of Peter's adamant refutation of this, we know that this did, in fact, occur. In spite of his promise, Peter denies his rabbi, his teacher, his friend. And Jesus forgave him and loved him still.
The rooster crowing now reminds me of my own denial. How many times have I promised God something that I later fail to follow through with? How many times do I "deny" Christ, by simply "doing what I do"? How many times do I become irritated and hurt and unforgiving. And how many times, despite my short-comings, does Jesus continue to show up for me?
The rooster crowing is not admonishment. It is not judgement. The rooster is simply doing what roosters do. Checking on his loved ones, letting me know that "all is right with the world" and reminding me that Jesus is here. Loving me. In Spite of myself. Forgiving me, despite the many times I have failed him.
The rooster also reminds me to be alert, to be watchful and present. To pay attention to the people around me. To not become so lost in the clutter of my mind that I miss out on what is happening around me. To not become so dragged down by all the things that irritate me throughout the day that I fail to notice the joy. To not let the spotty cell phone service or intermittent internet make me crazy, to not allow the driver in front of me that doesn't use their signal to incite road rage, to see the kid that doesn't want to do his math paper not as a personal affront, but as a cry for help, To not allow the angry words of my brother steal my peace, or let the friend that wasn't honest, that excluded me, or left me out to engender a response that I will later regret...To remember that none of these events are strategically TRYING to irritate or hurt ME specifically. They are all just human beings doing what they do. Just like that rooster. And just like me. And I can decide to be irritated by them, or I can choose to let them go. I can choose to be angry. Or I can choose to forgive. I can choose poultry homicide, or I can choose to see the crowing as a reminder of God's love for me.
The rooster crows a third time. He is not agitated. He is calm, just signalling all is well. I listen to the gentle crowing and I think, "All is right with the world".
And I realize that all IS right with the world. Yes, we are in the middle of a pandemic. Yes we are still somewhat isolated. Yes there has been unrest and disunion. Yes there is still strife in the world...Yes, I have been irritated and hurt and angry.. But this morning, in this moment, all is right in MY corner of the world. I am alive. I am healthy. I have a job and a home and a family that loves me. Maybe my friend hurt me. Maybe my brother and I had a fight. But those things have passed. And right now, in this moment..It is well with my soul.
Yes, I am awake at 3 in the morning. I can lay here and complain and suffer. Or I can use this time to meditate, to pray, to practice self-care, to calm my mind and rest my spirit. I can use this time to worry and stew.
Or I can remember the rooster's signal that all is well and focus on the things that are right.. all the things and people that bless me. I can choose peace.
I lay here in the dark... and ponder these things.. and all is quiet...
Except for the rooster.
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