This week I return to my internship. In a lot of ways it feels like the first day of school in middle school. I’m eager to go back, I know the teachers and classmates and the place, and yet I feel deeply different than I was when I left. Yes, that new clothes sparkly feeling of entry, but also knowing that this is re-entry for me. I may look the same (minus hair) but inside I’m different. I’m less innocent about health and my body and how changes can come fast and furious to me and mine. And maybe I’m more awake to equally deep spiritual realities, what my relationship to the divine looks like under duress, to the blessings of excellent pastoral care and even what my ministerial presence might look like. I’m awake to what friends and community can offer. I’m grateful for that. And I’m less naive.
We look with uncertainty
Beyond the old choices for
Clear-cut answers
To a softer, more permeable aliveness
Which is every moment
At the brink of death;
For something new is being born in us If we but let it.
We stand at a new doorway,
Awaiting that which comes …
Daring to be human creatures.
Vulnerable to the beauty of existence.
Learning to love. —Anne Hillman
Dear one, please help Alexa to hold uncertainty with grace. To live a softer reality aware of changes that have come to her through her illness and that of her son. Let her know deeply the spiritual dimension of those changes while also holding onto the truth of the deep changes and losses this time has wrought. Let her internship resume with all the blessings that offers, and give her the energy and wisdom to live that internship vulnerably and fully to become the minister she seeks to be.