Endings and Beginnings and New Journeys

Bright morning streams in through the window in front of me. The sky the particular blue of winter, washed out from its long journey through the year. Snow erases itself from the yard in a warming spell, and we’re in the pause between Christmas and New Years Eve.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve measured my life in seasons rather than deeds. Seasons have been the touchstone in a life of travel and wandering, of changing or adding on professions or people. Only in these last years, the past — what — nearly fifteen, oddly enough, have I lived in one place with journeys out but always returning. Here. To these wide windows in this particular house that let in the sun and seasons.

It astounds me: me who spent her life moving and traveling since the early months of her life and frugal with possessions and boxes now has a writing room filled with papers and books and exercise equipment and window, and it’s almost as big as my entire house in Santa Fe and bigger than some apartments I’ve had.

The Flight into Egypt by Giotto di Bondone (13...
The Flight into Egypt by Giotto di Bondone (1304-06, Scrovegni Chapel, Padua). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tomorrow we celebrate Holy Family, the man, the woman, the newborn babe who traveled, looking for a safe place to stop. We don’t know much about those early journeys. Some say they went to Egypt to live until it was safe to return home, and perhaps they did. Perhaps they just kept traveling, wandering from place to place, Joseph finding work as a carpenter when he could. There is historical evidence of Herod’sSlaughter of the Innocents” so it’s easy to believe that the family would have continued traveling as long as danger might be present.

We travel for many reasons–for pleasure, discovery, jobs, school, and sometimes because we are called or sent. I suppose the difference between the two is being led or pushed. And sometimes there’s not much difference between the two.

But these days, this pause between the Christmas Holy Days and the beginning of a new calendar year, are days when we are called to remember, recollect our past year, clean up details that can be dispensed with, and begin again.

May your new beginning be free of the baggage you need to leave behind; may it open itself to possibilities and promises; and may these days now, these gentle days of pause, refresh you and bring you peace.

Listen for the call. It’s always present.

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