July 2022 Letter from the Minister

July Letter from the Minister

Beloved members and friends,

I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling the weight of the world right now. The past few weeks have been hard and there are times when I find myself wondering, “What’s next?” Living a life of gratitude, compassion, and kindness is hard when the days seem dark, sad, and filled with grief. I find hope in our community, hope in my children, hope in the chirping of baby birds because they are all a reminder of the fullness of life. I turn to the well-worn pages of my copy of 100 Meditations: Selections from Unitarian Universalist Meditation Manuals edited by Kathleen A. Montgomery and the poem written by Rev. Dr. Richard S. Gilbert, When Life Is Messy (found here). I’ve used this as a sacred text many times in my life, especially during the hard times when I need just a small reminder of how great and complex life is. 

Life indeed is beautiful and messy. Both things are true. How do we hold them in sanctity together? Such is the journey of our “circle of life,” our theme for the month of July. I’d like to invite us all to seek and reach out for our tethers, those things we find grounding. To bring us back to a space of peace and calm. Perhaps it’s meditation or prayer. Maybe it’s a long phone call with a friend or a silent walk in the woods. It could even be rewatching favorite movies or enjoying the rain from your porch. Whatever and wherever we find that peace, it’s important for us to hang on to it. Hang on to it when we hear of yet another senseless act of violence, hang on to it when we are disappointed with our government, seek it when we are scared for our healthcare and the care of those we love, reach for it when we are worried for the generations to come. 

I am here for you, if and whenever you need someone to lament to or lament alongside with. The aim is not to be a “gray cloud,” the aim is to find understanding and compassion with like minded souls who are on this journey of complexity with us. 

In the days and weeks to come, as we move well into the heat of summer, my blessing is that we are all able to find our soothing balm. Jump in the pool or run in the rain with me! And if for just a moment, let’s forget our concerns and embrace our joys. For just a moment, then we get back to work and the oh so important tasks at hand. 

Peace and blessings y’all, 

Min. Shakeisha

Piedmont Unitarian Universalist Church