The hour of illumination

This morning I return to Seven Sacred Pauses and reflect on the hour of illumination which falls at noon. The author says noon is a good time to pause and be reminded that each of us has the potential to give birth to whatever our world most needs. As Gandhi famously said, "We must be the change we wish to see in the world." To that she adds, "We must be the peace we wish to see in the world." In her own community, at the end of their noonday praise and just before they pray the Angelus, the community recites these words:

Lead me from death to life,

from falsehood to truth.

Lead me from despair to hope,

from fear to trust.

Lead me from hate to love,

from war to peace.

Let peace fill our hearts,

our world, our universe.


I imagine we all have a deep longing for peace in our world and we know that peace must begin in our own hearts. This makes sense to me and yet I find it's often so hard to do. I want to live with peace and calm and kindness all the time and yet I'm impatient and edgy with my husband and think terrible thoughts about people I don't like. I'm far too often actually not at peace within - especially as I ruminate about the state of our political landscape and the horrors of this violent world we live in. I'm self-critical and quietly judgy of others. A lot. I'm ungrateful and self-centered. Which is why I need these pauses in my day. To re-set. To be reminded of my and our centeredness in Christ, our peace. To open my heart to that peace and to pray for the humility and grace to be a channel of it to others.

Peace, peace to you today in all your pauses.