BEING PRESENT involves letting go of our current preoccupations, immersing ourselves in the here and now, and giving ourselves wholeheartedly to whatever is at hand. Involving far more than being merely physically present, it’s about becoming more aware, alert, awake to the fullness of the immediate moment. If we are with another person, it means engaging him or her with all of our heart, our mind, our soul, and our strength. Such wholehearted attention requires patience, time, and disciplined effort. And it is one of the greatest gifts that we can give to those around us, especially our suffering neighbor. When a priest asked the Russian spiritual writer Catherine de Hueck Doherty what contribution he could make to a hurting and broken world, she answered simply, “Your presence, Father.”
—Trevor Hudson, A Mile in My Shoes: Cultivating Compassion (Upper Room Books, 2005)
“A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favor is better than silver or gold.”
—Proverbs 22:1 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
Give me the eyes to see when others hurt, the ears to hear when others cry, and the courage to bring light into their darkness.
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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