Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Enneagram Workshop February 6-7, 2015

     Discover a wonderful tool for personal and relationship transformation. The Enneagram is an ancient, rich and practical study of nine personality styles that can help individuals recognize areas of brokenness and move toward
wholeness, healing and healthy relationships

When: Friday, February 6, 6:30–9 p.m. 
            Saturday, February 7, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

Where:  Modesto Covenant Church, 913 Floyd Ave.,  
                Modesto, CA (Fireside Room)   
Registration:  email Lori Carlson at
                  or call her at 209.262.5326 for more information

Cost:  $50.00 per person, $75.00 per couple

Participants must take the Wagner Enneagram Personality Style Scales (WEPSS) prior to the workshop and bring the results with them. The online inventory is available at for a $10 fee.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Is this exercise?

Cooper wants to golf with me and so we each have our clubs and I tee off.  I tell him when we get closer to the hole, he can tee off.  300 yards is a long way for a 4 year old to hit a ball.   We get about 90 yards from the green and he hits his first ball and then turns to me and asks, "Is this exercise?"  

I reflect on his question wondering what he is really asking.  "If this is exercise it doesn't feel like it!" or "This feels like exercise to me and I don't want to do it!"  Whatever he meant by his question, I consider that this is what life is like, what the spiritual journey is like.  There are parts that I ease into and move freely and lightly and there are parts that are just plain hard work.  

One thing I do ever I make the journey, it can't be done without community!   Cooper and I played 3 holes together and then he when fishing with his PAPA in the pond by the 6th hole. I am not sure if either were exercise, but we did it together.   David Benner in his book,The Gift of Being Yourself, says, "No one should ever expect to make the journey alone. Knowing yourself and knowing God depends on being accompanied by others on our journey toward the heart of God." 

As your fall begins  you may want to consider joining others on your journey towards God. See opportunities to the right in the page "2014-15 at a Glance".

New to Soul Care?  Sometimes, the demands of everyday life keep us from tending to the inner life of our soul.  Our soul's health drives everything that matters to us. Souls need care. But how do you find ways to do it?  Soul Care offers contemplative opportunities to explore how our daily, exterior life is deeply integrated with the interior movements of God.  Time is set aside for prayer, reflection, silence, listening and sharing—core spiritual practices that are paramount to being present to God and noticing Him in unexpected ways through the everyday experiences of life. Opportunities include group direction, personal retreat days and individual spiritual direction.  If you are interested in discovering what Soul Care might look like in your spiritual journey, contact Missy Stewart ( - 209.985.1146), Alita Richter ( - 209.613-8089) or Ragena Ensley ( - 209.480.5410).

Monday, May 26, 2014

Light the Candle...

Maddie and Abby want to go on a  retreat and after two years of asking, Granny said, "Yes!" (with the encouragement and help of two friends!)  They can't wait!  At first Abby wants to light all the candles and I have to remind her that each one who comes will get to light their own.  Yesterday they practiced lighting candles.   That is an important part of the day I tell them.  We light them to remind us that God is present with us.  There is a pause.  Who know what is going on in their little heads.  They practice again and again and I say it again, "These remind us that God is present."  How often do I need that reminder as I go about my day?  In the lighting of the candles, in the making of the bed, fixing dinner, doing laundry, reading a book, having conversation with my husband or a friend, God is present!  My summer days will be different, routine and what is normal interrupted.  "Holy Interuptions" are my invitations to pause, light my candle and know that God is present!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Thoughts as we wait and watch during Advent.....

O holy night!  The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
‘Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.

I love the middle phrase of this Christmas carol –
“Long lay the world in sin and error pining, til He appeared and the soul felt its worth.”  Pining is a word full of desire, longing and hope.  And when Jesus comes, in the past through his human birth, in the present through his life birthed in me, and in the future promise of life in him, my soul knows the love of the God who is love.  
I have been an obstetric nurse my entire professional career.  I have had the privilege of being in attendance and supporting birthing.  New life enters the world with passion and is welcomed with open arms. I can think of no better image than that of welcoming my own grandchildren into my life to reflect how I have experienced the love of God.  I love them with a love that knows no bounds.  I delight in everything they do; my eyes look on each one with wonder at who they are and who they are becoming.  I gaze at them in love…  and so I think it is with God.  He created me and gave me life.  He delights in me; he looks at me with love.  My love and interaction with these beautiful grandchildren have shown me the love of God through loving.
Advent is an amazing invitation to wait in anticipation for the coming of His love incarnate.  As I have seen many a baby welcomed and have embraced my grandchildren, I want to express my love to God and welcome his gift of new life, that when he appears, my soul feels it’s worth.

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.” John 1: 14