Embracing the Shadows

Today my own breathing is loud and disturbing…

pots pans…My mind is as noisy as a 2 year old banging pots.

As I lie before the Bread of the Presence my own agonizing noise is offered and surrendered up in the shrieks, cries and groans of Christ’s suffering upon the Tree.

I’ve come here that I might be captured from the world that I have let form me so frantically and frenzied.

I have nothing saintly or silver. All I have is the sludge from the bottom of the barrel of my soul. Sludge that is smeared and stained with the severity of my long separation and the sin of my self centered will and the sickness of my soulish solutions.prison

I am a scavenger with a scarcity of supplies.

My deposits today are death and dereliction, debauchery and deterioration, duplicity and deprivation…Deliver me oh Lord from my destructive depths – free me from my prison – my private prison…my solitude and silence in sin.

(Then I moved out into the Basilica and sat in the light as it came through the stained glass)

AbbeyI embrace the shadows because it means I have once again emerged from the darkness to stand in the places of His light. Grace upon all who live within the shadowlands of this sphere.

I would prefer to be blinded by the light than to grope in the darkness. To squint in the light than to have my eyes wide open in the darkness.

Hopefully my life will leave behind more than a smeared smudge of my fingerprint upon some dusty shelf. I am looking at the top of the pew in front of me and in the sun light I can see the smudged fingerprints of those who rose and kneeled before me…I do not want that to be all that remains of me.

pool of colors

pool of colors

The beautiful colors of the stained glass have fallen off the wall and are running like water colors upon the floor. How long will the colors that come to me last? Soon they will be past, but dance in them I may, as they paint the floor new every day. Colored light is now the way, it offers me more than my usual black, white and gray.

I long to return to the sacramental and charismatic acts of a physical and mystical place…to give holy movement and concrete centering to our lives.

I stood behind the Altar today…there is something more sacred in leading from the Table than there is a pulpit.

The disciplines and sciences of the faith have secured me to the Table and I am undergoingaltar 3 procedures of being dissected. I am feeling the blade of the knife and it seems to me to be leaving a large incision and yet I am consciously aware the cut is only microscopic. I long to lay here longer because the ghastly exhale unearths all my filthy rags that I have stuffed inside. But the real reason I long to linger is because of the healing that is seeping inside. There is so much more of me that is lost inside. I must return often to discover the me he created me to be.

… during a Solitude & Silence retreat Conception Abbey 2007

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About Michael Welchert

My wife Diana and I have been married since 1985 and have five wonderful children. I have been in ministry since 1980 and we currently reside in the Denver, CO area.
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