|Welcome To The Religion Network!
I'm Lisa Bowman, editor of The Religion Network, a multi-faith Web site. This site provides inspirational quotes through an
exploration of a new spiritual theme every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The Religion network is offered with the
conviction that inspiration can be found in all spiritual faiths, and furthermore, that finding the commonalities
among the world's religions is more healing than pointing up their differences.
Religion as an institution is a precious gift, blessing individuals and uplifting communities. However you choose to
worship, I hope this site enhances your journey. If you'd like to know my story, click on biography.
ON TODAY'S SITE:
Joyce Rupp, Book of Ecclesiastes, Native American Prayer
Autumn and Spring are our two most dramatic seasons, I think. Of course, I live in Southern California,
where our seasons are actually drought, fire, mudslide and earthquake; but still,
one is always caught
off guard by the tender green of Spring's arrival. Fall, on the other hand, is marked by a collective sigh
of relief from the heat. The air smells richer, the sky is bluer;
sweaters are pulled out from the back of
the closet for evening wear. I know it's Fall when I yearn to wear plaid, even though I don't own any.
The seasons mark the rhythms of our earthly lives. These rhythms throb deep in our bones; they
are engraved on our hearts. Small wonder ancient cultures worshipped the elements that made
up the seasons of their lives and their livelihoods. The links remain strong and primal today.
If we are but aware of all this, we understand how the seasons are a tapestry of life metaphors:
new life gently flourishing and growing; ripe productivity and the harvesting of our efforts; the
letting go of the old in order to rest and regenerate; and ultimately, the stark beauty of letting
the body grow cold so that the spirit is free to soar toward a new and eternal Spring.
As the Bible says, for everything, there is a season.
Photo by Stephen Bowman All rights reserved
A Prayer for Autumn
God of the seasons, there is a time for everything;
there is a time for dying and a time for rising.
We need courage to enter into the transformation process.
God of autumn, the trees are saying goodbye to their green,
letting go of what has been. We, too, have our moments
of surrender, with all their insecurity and risk.
Help us to let go when we need to do so.
God of fallen leaves lying in colored patterns on the ground,
our lives have their own patterns.
As we see the patterns of our own growth,
may we learn from them.
God of misty days and harvest moon nights there is
always the dimension of mystery and wonder in our lives.
We always need to recognize your power-filled presence.
May we gain strength from this.
God of harvest wagons and fields of ripened grain,
many gifts of growth lie with the season of our surrender.
We must wait for harvest in faith and hope.
Grant us patience when we do not see the blessings.
God of geese going south for another season,
your wisdom enables us to know what needs to be
left behind and what needs to be carried into the future.
We yearn for insight and vision.
God of flowers touched with frost and windows
wearing white designs, may your love keep our hearts
from growing cold in the empty seasons.
God of life, you believe in us, you enrich us,
you entrust us with the freedom to choose life.
For all this, we are grateful.
Excerpted from "May I Have This Dance?"
To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:
A time to be born,
And a time to die;
A time to plant,
And a time to pluck what is planted...
He has made everything beautiful in its time.
Also He has put eternity in their hearts,
except that no one can find out the work
that God does from beginning to end.
I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice,
and to do good in their lives,
and also that every man should eat and drink
and enjoy the good of all his labor -- it is the gift of God.
I know that whatever God does,
it shall be forever.
Nothing can be added to it,
And nothing taken from it.
Ecclesiastes 3: 1-3, 11-14
The Holy Bible
New King James Version
The Last Word:
May none of Your human children doubt
or question Your wisdom, grace, and sense
of wholeness in giving all of Creation a right
to be living extensions of Your perfect love.
From a Native American prayer
Totally Random Bonus Quote:
To err is human.
To loaf is Parisian.
Victor Hugo (1802-1885)
French poet, playwright, novelist