Marv and Nancy Hiles

We Die with Half our Music in Us

George Buttrick, an imaginative preacher, wrote poignantly, "We die with half our music in us." How sad, not that we die, but that we leave so much unsung, not having exhausted our melody.
~ Marv and Nancy Hiles
All the Days of My Life
By Marv And Nancy Hiles

The pieces of light we crave

There are insects always within sight, there are lights and shadows at play this very moment, but in our distraction we miss the drama that could accompany our quiet attention and give us the pieces of light we crave.

~ from ALL THE DAYS OF MY LIFE by Marv and Nancy Hiles

Then the mass of the world dances on the pinhead of our wonderment

There are times when life can't help itself and, as the Psalmist wrote, "Deep calls unto deep." Then the mass of the world dances on the pinhead of our wonderment, and our breath so carefully cultivated carries us, like the wind, whithersoever it will.

~ from ALL THE DAYS OF MY LIFE, by Marv and Nancy Hiles

Let us stay in our chairs as long as we dare

Let us stay in our chairs as long as we dare, breathing gently until another rhythm takes over. Let us risk inaction, become receptive, give our thoughts to the blank wall, let our layers be peeled back, accept our dreams as true even if we must wait and wait, trusting that all human life is part of an intricate unfolding of the One Reality.

~ from All the Days of My Life by Marv and Nancy Hiles

Let our emptiness remain empty

We need to sit still, let our emptiness remain empty, and wait patiently. If we fill the foreground with busy questions, reasons or proposed actions, we will miss the God who is the silent, yet ever present horizon of the world.

~ from All the Days of My Life by Marv and Nancy Hiles

The little ways open

We find our quiet minds as we sit still with our breath, as we make small jottings in our books, and as we practice silent waiting. Then one day, "the little ways" open into broad expanses.

~ from ALL THE DAYS OF MY LIFE by Marv and Nancy Hiles

Something in nature knows what it is doing

No matter what the weather looks like outside the window, life is warming up. Something in nature knows what it is doing; even if from time to time winter icily touches the napes of our necks with its cold fingers. . . . Woods will fill with black-birds and grackles, and swollen buds will cling like small birds to wet branches. . . . Old oaks sleep as long as they can, while the rest of creation exhibits an aching restlessness to move on. As everything begins to move, an almost forgotten song plays in our chests, the music of beginning again. The early small birds flit here and there on the rising winds; a lone, red-winged blackbird sits unmoving in the empty cherry tree . . . waiting . . . To live is to change, to move through one transition after another, to reinvent one's life, as needed. . . .

~ from AN ALMANAC FOR THE SOUL by Marv and Nancy Hiles

Two silences

There are two silences. One silence I choose to keep when I need to hear a word that will heal, instruct, or console. The other silence comes when I have heard something so powerful, so real, that words, spoken or written, would only diminish its power.

~ from ALL THE DAYS OF MY LIFE by Marv and Nancy Hiles

Our courage to turn aside in gratitude

One day builds on another. Our lives accumulate in increments of moments, hours, and days. Everything depends on this present moment and our courage to turn aside in delight, wonder, and gratitude.

~ from ALL THE DAYS OF MY LIFE by Marv & Nancy Hiles

To pray is not to use special language

To pray is not to use special language; it is the sound of a cry or a laugh rising from ordinary days. Formal or official words can often be lifeless. To pray we need to return like children to an elemental language of soul, to something close to song, to chant, to playground singing.

~ from ALL THE DAYS OF MY LIFE by Marv and Nancy Hiles
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