Rythm-a-ning...

This rhythm-a-ning of life... is a trip. Earlier this week, in the heart of this bleak midwinter, I was struggling. Not just because it is so cold and the snow fall has been ridiculous - all you can do is laugh or else you'll cry - but because I couldn't get a handle on my own grief. I was missing Grace and Rick and my father along with Mike and Dolores and Lou Reed. Really. And the more I tried to sit with their spirits the more troubled and agitated I became. I know THEY are all at rest in God's grace, but I was missing them all something fierce.

And then I had to deal with soul vampires as well as my own weariness. That was five of seven days and I could feel myself ground down. Lucie did her best to pull me out of myself - she is most excellent that way - but I needed more assistance. So, after 2+ hours of scouring the kitchen yesterday - and seeing REAL results - I was in a much better place. And then I played a gig with two dear friends last night that was totally outrageous. Win showed up with his dear wife and brought his flute along, too! So we rocked out with blues and Cuban folk songs, Beatles' tunes and "Keep Your Hands to Yourself." A total gas.
But the icing on the cake was a friend and colleague from church who bought me a shot of 12 year old single malt because, "I've wrestled with those damn soul vampires at church, too!" It wasn't so much the drink - although that was delightful - it was the gentle act of solidarity in the midst of shared suffering. I felt so understood and affirmed in that crazy bistro. We sipped our drinks together, told wild stories and enjoyed the blessing of being alive, warm and happy.

Worship was very contemplative today: just what the doctor ordered. After some post- liturgy meetings, Di said: You probably know this but for the first time I got what was going on with Jesus and Psalm 22. He just said the opening verse and the rest was implied, right? They all knew that this was not just a lament, but also a song of praise.

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? I cry out by day, but you do not answer; and by night but I find no rest. Yet you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel. In you our ancestors trusted; they trusted and you delivered them.. O God, do not be far away. O my help, come quickly to my aid.

That's what I mean about this rhythm-a-ning: as Monk played it, I am aware that to everything there is a season - and a place - for God's grace is forever. Dig the patience Monk has throughout this tune - especially the way he sits during the bass solo. A total Lenten journey all wrapped up in one jazz masterpiece. So, I have another two hours of kitchen detail calling to me but first I need to a little Sunday nap.

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