All day long I hope in Your goodness.
Remember Your love,
The love that You promised long ago.
And the kindness that you
Gave from of old.
Refrain: To You, Yahweh, I lift up my soul O my God.
To You, Yahweh, I lift up my soul, O my God.
~ Tim Manion, “I Lift Up My Soul”
I just don’t know what to write about anymore. I have a hard time getting my mind to focus. The thoughts that go through my head are full of me. I’m being so self-focused. How do I feel today? I can’t seem to concentrate or meditate. Sometimes I’m a bit afraid and I need to give myself a good talking to. People ask how I am and all I know to say is, “I’m hanging in there.” Or “I’m ok.” And I am ok, even when I’m not. This meditation is days late and I had it mostly ready on Friday of last week. I just couldn’t finish it.
When a person is seriously ill, all of one’s days seem to be the same. Or at least it seems so to me. I can plan to do a certain thing, but I may not feel well enough to do what I plan. Or I might have a doctor’s appointment somewhere. In the last four months, I have been in the hospital four times and in ER three or four as well. I have said, often, that I try to stay in the moment because that is the place I really live. I don’t live in yesterday and I don’t live in tomorrow, but really living today is, many times, difficult.
I had an appointment with the cancer nurse about two weeks ago and she told me that the doctor is not going to give me the cancer drug again. That’s good because we’ve tried it twice. I have had two episodes of septic shock while taking it – the second episode was the very day that I restarted it. My last two hospital stays were because of serious reactions to that medication and those episodes have really sapped my energy. The first one nearly killed me. My life now, for sure, is in the hands of God, but then, life really is anyway, isn’t it? I continue to hang tight to the hem of Jesus’ garment. But there are other things I can do. God things. Jesus things.
I can, and have decided to, take something from each day that comes. I can focus on where I have noticed the presence of Jesus this day. What has God given to me? What joy? What insight? What sense of his presence? What God moment? What gratitude? What event took place? Perhaps a disappointment. What did God teach me through that disappointment? When in this day was I closest to God? When did I feel far from God or did I? Where did I see light today? When did I give it? For what was I grateful today? Most grateful? In our evening prayer I can, and did, talk this day over with Jesus.
Part of this exercise is called the Examine of Consciousness (awareness). This is NOT the Examination of Conscience used for preparation before making a confession. The Examine was developed by St. Ignatius Loyola but I have added some of my own questions for reflection.
These last two weeks I’ve been trying to deliberately be more aware of God in my day. Since Thanksgiving was yesterday, my main focus for the week has been on gratitude and giving thanks. Sometimes, when a grateful thing happens, I send myself a note so that I don’t forget these things at the end of the day and can list them.
Included in my list for the last two weeks of gratitude are thanksgivings for the many prayers being said for my healing and for comfort for my family
For delicious meals brought in
For a warm fire on a cold, grey day, watching the flames and feeling God’s presence
Feeling better and stronger some days
Being able to do a few household chores
Being able to sing a bit more
My voice is stronger
Good day with Soul Friends
I walked around the block. Ok, it’s a long block. Without backup. First time in awhile.
See how much better I feel after just listing some of my grateful things. I thank God for them and you. If you want to know more about the Examine, let me know,
When you’re looking for JOY, you will always find it hiding in your GRATITUDE ~ unknown
May you find many grateful things the rest of this Thanksgiving week for which you want to thank God.
Peace and Good, Donna