“Let us slow down enough to truly notice all that is presenting itself to us as blessing.”
~ Kristi Nelson

Source of all blessings, you bless us with summer! A time when many of us are drawn to the nourishing embrace of nature, time with family and friends, and a more spacious schedule. Many of us also make more time to notice that which inspires us and delights our senses. With this quality of the season in mind (and we hope that our friends in the Southern Hemisphere will be equally inspired), we invite you to explore this sweet, simple — yet potentially transformative — practice of tending to the presence of blessing in your life. This collection of blessings complements Summer Blessings: Practice Series II.

Our inspiration is Br. David Steindl-Rast’s 99 Blessings: An Invitation to Life, a collection of whimsical and precise celebrations crafted over a three-month period during which Br. David wrote one blessing each day — a blessing for whatever happened to come to his mind: “from insects to the Internet, from friendship to fresh linen.”

“Blessing, rightly understood, is the invisible bloodstream pulsating through the universe–alive and life-giving.” ~ Br. David Steindl-Rast

May these eight, short blessings, and the images that accompany them, help you to more deeply notice, appreciate, and feel nourished by the blessings always in your midst and move you to freely share your blessings with others…

The Practice

We recommend you bookmark this page and move through the practice days at your own pace. You might move through the practice alone or consider exploring it with others, as part of a group experience.

Day 1.  Wind
Sense how it feels to honor wind in its many forms with a grateful and curious receptivity. When we gently see and seek the blessings of whatever blows into our lives, life can become infinitely richer and more interesting.


Day 2.  Hidden Things
Sense how it feels to honor the innumerable hidden things that make our lives — and life itself — possible, profound, and so often, pleasurable. When we allow ourselves to acknowledge that which is hidden, we expand our capacity for humility and connection.


Day 3.  Seashells
Sense how it feels to honor the beauty, wonder, and lessons of seashells. When we allow ourselves to be with, and contemplate, the fragility and tenacity of life it can quickly refine our experience of this moment and its precious, myriad possibilities.


Day 4.  Falling Stars
Sense how it feels to honor the perpetual gift of stars that are visible, invisible, seemingly steady, falling, and otherwise. When we allow ourselves to experience the awe evoked by such a wondrous display, we cultivate perspective and peace.


Day 5.  Summer Rain
Sense how it feels to honor the softening and life-giving gifts of summer rain. When we allow ourselves to be nourished and guided by the rhythms of a gentle rain or a drenching downpour, we experience ourselves as part of the great river of life.


Day 6.  Courage
Sense how it feels to honor courage as it humbles and inspires us. When we allow ourselves to connect with boldness and simple stamina, we venture into new territory and experience freshly-revealed vistas with curiosity and heart.


Day 7.  Dragonflies
Sense how it feels to honor the ancient, delicate and playful dance of dragonflies. When we allow ourselves to shimmer, celebrate and play, we cultivate resilience and joy.


Day 8.  Unfinished Business
Sense how it feels to honor all that remains unfinished. When we allow ourselves to welcome the tension between limitless opportunities and finite time, we hone discernment and an ability to let go with a light heart.


We leave you with this blessing for the times and seasons of life:

SOURCE OF ALL BLESSINGS,
you bless us with times and
seasons–bringing in their
course birthdays, saints’ days,
and holy days, ever recurring in
their cycles, yet ever new when
they arrive. May I be steadied by
their rhythm, from the rising of
sap to sprouting, blossoming, and
fruiting, falling of fruit and leaves
and of the first snow; may I give
myself to the flow of this great
circle dance that carries us and
joins us together.

 

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