Please Stay on the Path

“And when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left, your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.’ ” 

Isaiah 30:21

“If the path before you is clear, you’re probably on someone else’s.”

Carl Jung

Walking at one of my favorite places, the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center, I noticed a sign in a newly planted bed that read, “Please stay on the path.” I laughed. Yes, life unfolds with more wonder and less angst when you stay on the path. There’s just one problem—how do you do that? The path is never straight and rarely easy. Often it seems to dead end in a clump of bushes or just sort of fade out. Sometimes it twists up endless hills then drags through a blazing hot prairie. Occasionally it meanders through a lush forest with a graceful stream, and then unexpectedly pops you out onto a mesa in the midst of a gale.

If your path is so varied how do you stay on it? You tune in and follow the prompts. It’s sort of like having your own internal personal virtual assistant, Siri. According to Apple, Siri’s “parent,” here are the things Siri can do for you: “Siri lets you stay connected without lifting a finger. Let Siri finish your sentences for you. Don’t know who’s calling? Siri can help. You can ask Siri, ‘What does my day look like?’ Siri does more than ever. Even before you ask.” Other than Siri’s annoying habit of finishing your sentences for you, this all sounds pretty good!

That’s how it works – tune in – to your real internal personal virtual assistant. The voice of the Christ within you will nudge, whisper, hint and, when necessary, shout—but always kindly. And if you lose the path for awhile it’s OK, for the feeling of losing it is just that—a feeling. The admonition to stay on the path is one of God’s little jokes. Because we live in the heart of God we can never really be lost. That said, it sure is reassuring to hear the prompts.

As I complete my seventh year here as Senior Minister of Unity of Austin, I will be taking a month of Sabbatical leave during May. It will be a time for me to listen deeply. Sabbatical comes from the concept of Sabbath, taking time apart from the daily work of church ministry to focus on deep study and enriching contemplation. This time of going consciously to the well of Spirit renews me and expands my capacity to hear God’s word and serve from that blessing. Rev. Carol Moncada, our Associate Minister, will serve as Unity of Austin’s Sabbatical Minister during May. She brings her joyful love, Christ Consciousness, and light. I will be with you sharing the message this Sunday, May 02, and then I’ll see you in June!

In the Love and Light of the Risen Christ,
Rev. Anna


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