the sea of God (erin jean warde)
What is grief if not giving ourselves into the wide vastness of a sea, knowing the pain squeezes to fit inside the world’s waters?
the sea of God
For the past 2 weeks, I’ve been out of the office doing some of the hardest, holiest work of my life — scattering my sister’s ashes at the beach. I officiated a small funeral for her, according to our wishes and hers, back in December, days after her passing. The trip in February was just to scatter her ashes, to commit her to her final resting place on this earth. And how fitting to have your final resting place not be a single state, but the wide vastness of the sea?
Because what is grief if not giving ourselves into the wide vastness of the sea, knowing the pain squeezes to fit inside the world’s waters? One of the most helpful things my therapist told me was to throw out any notion that the stages of grief work in stages. They, of course, instead work in waves.
The beach has always been a holy place for me, a thin place as they say. Any water at all, really, can buoy me on the toughest days. But there is something about a sea, specifically, that brings me home to God. Maybe I love the sea, because even as I feel so close to God with my toes in the sand, I know God squeezes to fit inside the wide vastness of it. And now the sea of God holds her, too. So in meeting God in the waters, I get to see someone I love and see no longer. To visit her is to see God, to visit God is to see her.
I pray that if you, too, are holding grief, that you may trust it to the wide vastness of the sea, even if it squeezes to fit.
With love and care,
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If you’re in the Lancaster, PA area — Come hang out with me to kick off Lent! I’m grateful for the chance to be hosted by St. James-Lancaster & The Urban Well this weekend, Feb. 25 & 26! The retreat is also available via livestream if you’re not in the area. Just register below!
Join us for a weekend retreat exploring tools to help enable you to discern your own relationship with addictive choices or behaviors so common to us all.
Erin Jean Warde, ordained Episcopal priest and author of Sober Spirituality, will share her personal journey which led her to quit alcohol. She and smaller breakout groups will provide additional tools to help each participant explore a more mindful relationship with our substance misuse and dependencies and the richer sobrieties we might seek or experience.
Recommended for those seeking wholeness in mind, body and soul, for those questioning their relationship with any kind of addictive choice (or supporting someone who is) regardless of where they are in their journey. Those of any faith or none are welcome.
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