living alert

Welcome to a place of interaction, of hope, of seeing light. You are invited to tell about yourself and what is important to you on this blog.  You just need to enter your first name, in order to enter a response. This can be a place of community, of encouragement for each other.

My orientation is toward God: the Creator, the Redeemer and the Sustainer. When the flames divide into three and dance on the rim of a dancing life lamp, I recognize that I, too, am invited into the dance the Trinity, of wholeness.  The lamp rim that holds the dance, reminds me that I’m held by an Abundant source.  I ask you to interpret my words into something that is meaningful to you. As a chaplain, I am used to respecting an array of spiritual words.

I seek to live with expectancy, rather than expectations: being open, rather than closed; giving, rather than grasping.  I continue to say “YES,” to the divine invitation to breathe in God’s love, center myself in God’s Abundance, and let it flow out for the good of the world.  I love to see people take risks toward wholeness.

I am a three year old potter, alert to the invitations of the clay. I focus on making calming oil lamps to provide a quiet space for reflection and meditation in a whirling world.  I am most centered when I am centering a lump of clay, and each lamp is made with attention to meaning in the process. I took the risk of decreasing my chaplain hours to be available to a broader range of people.

During my years as a teacher in local elementary schools, schools and universities in Africa, and with our three children, I delighted in seeing students take that next smallest step in front of them.  My husband of 42 years and I, continue to learn from each other.

I spent nine years as a pastor in a small church, which quadrupled in number and experienced adaptive change as refugees poured into its loving embrace. These brave people continue to take steps toward amazing wholeness, individually, and as a community.  I love living alert to divine Nudges and the awe that follows responsiveness to Abundance.

Now I'm a chaplain, covering shifts in four hospitals.  I love the opportunity for vulnerability and honest conversation. It is a place of openness  - of soul, spirit and space. Dance of Life offers that same space.

On a recent Sunday, I changed my plans quickly to substitute for the weekend chaplain at a psychiatric hospital, who became ill. I led three chapel groups on two adult units and one adolescent unit.  I pulled up a message on Powerpoint I had used in my days as a pastor:  The Law of Love from Psalm 19, with photos of nature around us.  The love of God, communicated to us by our five senses, was reflected back to me from the wide open eyes of the groups gathered.  I am amazed all over again, when Love sits among willing listeners.  In one group, the technology did not work, but the Spirit did.  Member after member of that group voiced encouragement to each other to see the beauty in each person.  These groups of people are used to giving one goal and one affirmation of who they are each day.  It spreads to giving affirmations to others.  Even in the adolescent group, specific affirmations for each other flowed.  Where can you see this happening in our world today?

Be Alert to ways you can affirm others, or express gratitude to them. Over and over again.








Karen Sensenig