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September 29, 2014

Behold congenial Autumn comes: the Sabbath of the year. (John Logan)

A Prayer for Autumn It is our quiet time.
We do not speak, because the voices are within us.
It is our quiet time.
We do not dance, because the music

has lifted us to a place where the spirit is.
It is our quiet time.
We rest with all of nature.   (Nancy Wood)

Perhaps the earth can teach us
as when everything seems dead
and later proves to be alive.   (Pablo Neruda)

How shall we understand autumn's testimony that death and elegance go hand in hand? For me, the words that come closest to answering the question are those of Thomas Merton: "There is in all invisible things ... a hidden wholeness. "In the visible world of nature, a great truth is concealed in plain sight: diminishment and beauty, darkness and light, death and life are not opposites. They are held together in the paradox of "hidden wholes' Autumn constantly reminds me that my dailydyings are necessaryprecursors to new life. If I try to " make" a life that defies the diminishments of autumn, the life I end up with will be artificial, at best, and utterly colorless as well. But when I yield to the endless interplay of living and dying, dying and living, the life I am given will be real and colorful, fruitful and whole. (Parker Palmer: Let Your Life Speak).

God of all seasons,
strengthen me to live all my days,
not only in the time it takes to live them,
but also with the peace and patience necessary.
Save me from the waste of today,
caused by wanting tomorrow.
Help me stop fighting against time and tide,
comfort me in my resting moments
so that I may be strengthened
in soul and body for the living of the next day given to me
through your providence.

Eccles. 3:1-2

– Submitted by Virginia Waters Retreat Team 



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