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March 22, 2006
"And what was your moment closest to Christ?" It was my turn to explain myself. That was easy -- my moment (well, moments) closest to Christ happened several times over the past month, in retreats. People begin to be attuned to the prompting of the spirit, and you can see it happen: an intent listening to me, of course, but much more to the spirit within. Everyone already knows everything I ever say in front of a group. I bring nothing new. All that happens is that we find the space to understand again what it is that we know, and by whom it is that we are known. And always have been known. And we begin to hear God, in the quiet accents God uses with us, a communication that feels frustratingly indirect to us, sometimes, but one which never ceases. God never stops telling us. Love, love and love again. That's it.

"And your moment farthest from Christ?" That's not in the script, but we always get there immediately -- often the "moment closest" yields the moment farthest, its flip side.

"Well," I said, "I guess it was last night, when I was tired of people and tired of talking and tired of listening. It made me crabby and wakeful and impossible to please. I ended up going into the guest room and turning on the BBC." My dependable lullaby -- I can always fall asleep to the soothing tones of the BBC. I had missed Q for days while I was away, and then, when I finally got home, I was unable to interact.

Moment closest and moment farthest -- one leads to the other, sometimes. The thing you love is also the thing you can't stand. Fickle, we are, and contrary, even when we wish with all our hearts we were not that way.

Jesus doesn't have a moment closest to me, or a moment farthest. He's right here, all the time, and he is as constant as I am not. When I awakened, after a silent night of sleep, he was there to welcome me back to civilization from wherever it was I had been when I first got home.
and I could hear the whistle of the tea kettle down in the kitchen. It was all still here.
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