Saturday, May 12, 2012

day of prayer

Once again, I found myself stumbled upon an adventure. I had plans to go to Yeti Indian Restaurant in Glen Ellen, just outside of Sonoma.  Of three routes, I inadvertently landed upon the one that went through and up the hills of Santa Rosa.  A road that was not unfamiliar to me, but one that I didn't remember until I was a few miles into it.  Full of twists and hair pin turns, one way roads & one lane bridges, all of it covered by a canopy of trees.  The higher up we got, the bigger the trees, Redwoods to be exact.  It smelled incredible.  

A couple of wrong turns, but I eventually found the restarurant tucked back into an old wooden building off of Highway 12.  Just enough shade to make for a comfortable lunch, still enough warmth to make it a perfect Summer day in Northern California.  The outside patio had 5 tables above which there were Tibetan Prayer Flags draped across the outside patio area.

As I sat there under those flags, eating lunch catching up on life and love with my aunt and uncle, I received two requests.  One for my dear, sweet girl Catie who was not doing well, admitted into the ICU and struggling with the disease that had been trying to define her for so many years now.  The other from a friend and colleague from another city, "to my Police family, pray for us this week, as we go to Washington DC for the National Law Enforcement Memorial Service, you know what this means to us, it will be tough."

They say that the purpose of the prayer flags is that they will carry your prayers with the wind. They are meant to be strung on a windy day and are not taken down until they are to be retired.  They weather the elements, they get worn, and like life, they are here and then they are gone.  The old are not replaced entirely by the new, they are strung up next to each other until one is retired and the other takes it place.  They are meant to promote peace, compassion, strength, and wisdom.  While I don't subscribe to the mantras that they are founded on, I do believe in symbolism.  I believe in the message and reminder that of what they stand for. I believe in prayer.  I believe that while we cannot always see it working the way that we think want it to, while our prayers sometimes seem to feel like they fall on deaf ears, the power of prayer is not always in the end result.  It's in the process of being humble to pray, to have faith, to receive peace, and wisdom.  I believe that prayer changes us from the inside out.

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