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'Hazel Delight'
(Archived on Sunday - February - 04/02/2018 )

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  Photo was taken at Altamount, Millstreet, Co.Cork (Irl)  
The Witch Hazel flower always stands out during the early days of February


Thought on Sunday - February - 04/02/2018

Thought For Today

Our Thought For Today is by Jane Mellett called 'Jesus the Healer'

In today's gospel we read about Jesus' first healing in Mark's Gospel. Jesus hears of the illness of the mother of Simon's wife and goes to her. Due to the purity laws of his time this scene would have been considered controversial. His first healing is of a woman and we are told that he touches her, raises her up; he completely restores her to health. Many of his actions here would be considered taboo.

The 'whole city' was crowded around the door as people wanted to also be healed. What a commotion! Jesus, very early on in his ministry, is clearly a very popular, attractive figure. Jesus is the healer. We might ask ourselves today: who do we know who is in need of healing of any kind? This week, how can we reach out to them?

Another important aspect of this story is that Jesus does not remain comfortable in this house. He keeps moving, keeps going outward. This requires so much energy and an outpouring of love for those in need. Jesus shows us in today's gospel what it takes to stay connected, to re-energise ourselves for our various tasks: quiet time and space for real encounter with God. Even then, the people hunted for him. 'Everyone is searching for you', and still today, everyone is searching. It is up to all of us to help those on this journey, the seekers, the lost and those in need of healing. We cannot break new ground unless we are inwardly free and connected to that divine presence within us and in our world.

Thought For The Week

"When we activate our energy for life, it is like the acorn mobilising itself towards the oak, the mustard seed towards the mighty tree, the dancer towards the dance, the clay towards the hand of the potter. Our sleeping souls uncurl and turn towards the light as every part of our being and even our immune system, is enlivened." ~Martina Lehane Sheehan

Next Thursday is Feb 1st and we will celebrate St Brigid's Day. In the Celtic tradition it is the official start of spring and meteorologically it starts on March 1st. Already we are aware of increasing light each day. Back in December 21st - the shortest day of the year - we had 7 hours and 44 minutes of daylight. On February 1st we will have 9 hours and 6 minutes of daylight in the south of Ireland. That is a significant increase.

St Brigid is famous for her 'St Brigid's Cross'. Using rushes she wove them all into a cross, to remind us that all the different strands of our lives are connected. They are connected not by chance but by the gentle presence of God in our lives. Brigid gathers our rushes of sorrow and blessings, of happiness and pain, tears and laughter, kindness and caring, of voluntary groups and organisations, of families, relations and friends, of schools and hospitals, of work, sport and recreation and all the little things we do with faith, hope and love. Brigid weaves them all with loving hands into something richer and more beautiful. For her God is always at the centre of everything we do, not just the good parts but simply everything.

In her new book called 'Surprised By Fire', Martina Lehane Sheehan talks beautifully about the divine spark that is within each person. It connects in so well with the feast day of St. Brigid. This divine spark can fuel our own happiness and can brighten the lives of those around us. Martina says that once we embark on the journey of finding our flame, life can no longer be seen as a mere haphazard or random string of lucky or unlucky events.

Because of the divine spark, within each person great things can begin to happen or unfold. The divine spark can lie dormant or it can be really active. St Brigid's Day invites us to let it become alive, to let it energise and give us hope. Allow your sleeping soul to uncurl and turn towards the light. When we allow this to happen we are indeed in a very good place.

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