I listen to strangers,
I listen to random invitations,
I listen to criticisms,
I listen to my body,
I listen to my creativity and to the artists who inspire me,
I listen to elders,
I listen to my dreams and the books I am reading,
I notice that the more I pay attention, the more
I see order, clear messages, patterns, and invitations in the small or seemingly random things that happen in my life.
In all these ways, I meditate on love.
adrienne maree brown, Emergent Strategy (2017)
Here in Ypsi, signs persist that the season is turning. The temp dips down to the low-50s at night and the sun sets seconds after the clock strikes eight (it was setting at 9:30pm just a month ago!). The red robins and Canadian geese are steering south.
High school football has begun. We attended the season opener with our friend Jyarland. Her son Malcolm is a senior captain for U of D Jesuit.
And, sure enough, the women of We The People of Detroit are still hauling thousands of gallons of water to victims of water shut-off.
Since the day we packed up our Toyota Corolla and exited Detroit last September, we’ve spent significant time in a few contexts: Saskatoon, Canada; Portland, Oregon; Southern California (Ojai, Los Angeles and Orange County); and Michigan. We have spent the night in thirty different places. This has taken a toll on us. These past ten weeks, we really feel like we’ve hit a sweet spot, getting to do work we are passionate about, but also finding time to read, write, rest, go slower and breathe. We have spent significant time centering ourselves and reconnecting with old partners in Detroit.
Flowing from the gift of this time, along with much prayer, dialogue and discernment, we have decided to stay here in Ypsilanti for the remainder of 2017.
We feel called to be soul tenders, or what the late Henri Nouwen called wounded healers. One of our mentors Rick Kidd refers to it as being change agents. We continue in a life-long process of learning to be free, joining others on the journey, and inviting more friends looking to do the same. It is a ministry of mutuality. We experience more newness of life as we share out of our own pain, struggle, hope and joy.
Until next month, we send peace and blessings from the Huron River.